|Fulvio enjoys lunch with French and Finnish friends|
Today is Easter Sunday and while many of you are preparing, eating or digesting your Easter dinner, I hope you enjoy a glimpse of life here in central Italy during this unseasonably chilly Easter season.
|orange salad with olives and onion|
Fireplaces were lighted and the atmosphere was warm at lunch with friends in the medieval section of Vetralla and also in the evening for the a celebratory birthday dinner near the Etruscan site of Castel d’Asso, Viterbo.
The variety of delicious dishes prepared by our two hostesses (one Japanese, the other English) and the congenial international company made for a wonderful, busy day.
|bresaola & radicchio salad|
Lunch started with spumante and grissini, then a series of antipasti including local cheese with patè di cipolle rosse, sun dried tomatos, bresaola and radicchio
|pumpkin ginger soup|
garnished with nuts, pumpkin-ginger soup, orange and onion salad, cous cous with shrimp, green beans and rucola.
|cous cous with shrimp|
Delicious pears baked in grappa and stuffed with raisins ended the lunch along with locally baked biscotti and a selection of liquor from Germany and Sardegna.
I was too busy enjoying the meal and good company to worry about photos, so they do not do justice to the food.
|celebratory birthday dinner|
The torrential rain stopped long enough in the evening for the drive to the country house where the birthday dinner was being held. After a toast we enjoyed an antipasto of spring rolls,mussels au gratin and anchovies on buttered bread.
Next came manicotti pasta stuffed with spinach and crab meat garnished with steamed garden greens.
|manicotti stuffed with spinach and crab|
This was followed by discs of polenta with tender calamari in their black ink.
|polenta and calamari|
The next course was monkfish saltimbocca dressed with bean pure and colorful dabs of basil and peppers.
The dessert of individual molten chocolate cakes and panna ended the meal but not before some hilarity brought on by a chocolate Easter chicken.
Tomorrow is Pasquetta or Lunedi del Angelo, usually the first day Italian families get together, weather permitting, for a picnic. The menu includes artichokes (carciofi alla nonna Agnesina), pizza di Pasqua and traditional lamb which will be roasted over the fire for several hours.