Yes! More pasta cooking lessons today! I think about all the pasta I have eaten in my life. I reflect on all the macaroni and cheese and spaghetti I have cooked for my family; all the humble bowl of noodles and butter that substituted for dinner in a pinch. For me, pasta is the base of almost all the comfort dishes I love.
We head back to Gobbi 13, the neighborhood trattoria where we had dinner on our first night. Today, the cooks show us how to make tagliatelle and pappardelle (my all time favorite noodle), served with a pungent garlic tomato sauce. We also prepared chicken with smoky, grilled veggies and ended with a buttery bing cherry crostata. It was a very busy morning! I picked up some very practical pasta making tips on how to knead, roll and slice the dough into noodles.
After two consecutive days of pasta prep, I am completely seduced, feeling confident of my newly acquired skills and am now envisioning a permanent pasta station in my home kitchen.
I’m also guessing that along with the home pasta station, I’ll be buying larger pants, but that’s a problem for another day.
While the Gobbi 13 staff set up our hard-earned lunch, Rhonda took us to the neighborhood market where I picked up ravioli presses and some gourmet food items to take home for gifts. I stared at the bin of baseball bat- sized rolling pins and seriously contemplated bringing one home. It would be such a great souvenir and it is priced much less than I could find at home. I just have to figure out how to get one in my carry-on suitcase. This should be my biggest problem of the week.
We came back to find the restaurant garden set up just for our group. It’s a lovely setting, with massive Cala Lilly plants encircling our table and a sweet dog named Otto poking his shiny nose through the fence comically begging for table scraps.
Our al fresco lunch featured all the items we made this morning. Everything was delicious and beautifully plated, thanks to the final flourishes from the restaurant staff. Three hours and two pasta courses later, I passed on a ride and decided to walk back down the hill to our hotel in a futile effort to burn off a fraction of the calories I just gleefully consumed.
At this point in the week I am truly thankful for the afternoon down-time, or as Coleen reminds us, here in Italy it is our reposino. This time to reflect on the morning, digest lunch and get a little snooze in is becoming a true afternoon delight.