16 Jul2006

meal1

We had several spectacular dinners in Rome. My wife’s cousin’s husband is an excellent cook. And proudly Roman, I might add… One evening we had a meal with several classics from the area. First, Bucatini all’ Amatriciana, which is essentially a tomato sauce with chunks of guanciale (pork jowl, featured a few weeks ago), lots of cracked black pepper (or red pepper flakes if you like) and generous amounts of grated parmesan or pecorino romano. meal2The key is the pasta…bucatini which looks like large spaghetti but which has a hole or tunnel running through it. It’s rather difficult to eat as it can get messy, you sometimes get air when you suck it into your mouth, but it is the quintessential pasta choice for this bold sauce. The bucatini was followed by some excellent Saltimboca a la Romana or Veal Saltimboca which are thin slices of veal with a slice of prosciutto and a sage leaf dusted in some flour that is then briefly sautéed in olive oil or butter. The tenderness of the veal, the saltiness of the proscuitto and the aroma and taste of the sage leaf is a delicious combination! Photo up top is before the dish was cooked.

The main course was followed with a nice bitter-ish salad. The meal3astringency of raddichio mixed with milder endive with a vinaigrette was a superb palate cleanser after the pasta and veal. Dessert was a great cheesecake baked with some Italian candied fruit and chocolate which was a perfect closing for the meal…not too sweet and a nice creamy texture. Sorry, no photos of dessert, they didn’t come out as we were practically dining in candlelight… We topped that all off with a whopping strong glass of limoncello. If we didn’t have to walk home, I would have readily passed out from dining and drinking bliss…

 

COMMENTS:

  1. fried-neurons says:

    Mmmm mmmm mmmm! That bucatini dish sounded good. Veal saltimboca is one of my all-time favorites! I’ll pass on the salad, as it has two strikes against it: raddichio and endive. :)

    Jul 16, 2006 | 7:40 am

     
  2. gonzo says:

    wow, a classic roman dinner if there ever was one. lucky you. the saltimbocca looks great.

    Jul 16, 2006 | 8:32 am

     
  3. millet says:

    how to have roman cousins-in-law who are great cooks?

    Jul 16, 2006 | 9:48 am

     
  4. Marketman says:

    millet, have an aunt who wants to major in Opera singing that goes to Rome for school and ends up living there for 50+ years and raises her family there…the saltimboca was good, and a lot of prosciutto is key… fried neurons…I noticed you don’t like bitter greens (or reds for that matter)… I used to be unable to eat radicchio, arugula, etc. but lately I have really found a liking for almost painful bitterness…

    Jul 16, 2006 | 10:19 am

     
  5. miles says:

    I believe it should be bucatini all’amatriciana–? Amatrice is “a tiny mountain town in the province of Rieti, near the border between Lazio and Abruzzi” (from ‘Saveur Cooks Authentic Italian’). Your enthusiasm & passion for all things culinary is contagious, and a real joy to read– more power.

    Jul 16, 2006 | 11:47 am

     
  6. Marketman says:

    Miles, you are probably right…my Italian is worse than my English…heehee. Thanks, I have corrected it.

    Jul 16, 2006 | 12:13 pm

     
  7. currystrumpet says:

    so DID your aunt become an opera singer? :-)

    Jul 19, 2006 | 5:32 pm

     
  8. Marketman says:

    She ended up getting married and raising a family…she can belt a mean aria, I’m sure…

    Jul 20, 2006 | 8:36 am

     
 

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