A Familiar Italian Gathering

31 Aug

Can we have too much of a good thing? Need you ask?

Last night, we held a long-planned “reunion” with the group who built the wood sheds last spring.

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com (May ’16)

Loreno, a master griller, wanted to cook for us again and we were more than happy to accept.

Stormy weather couldn’t dampen our enthusiasm; we just made a slight adjustment and moved the tables inside at Fernanda’s house.

The apperitivi, created by Fernanda and Bruna, were delicious: an assortment of crostini including tuna, smoked salmon, sausage, mushroom, and chicken liver; prosciutto and melon; homemade pizza.

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

In the meantime, while we were enjoying aperitivo, Loreno was working his magic outside. Fortunately, he had the grill undercover as the rain was relentless at times.

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

As each plate was brought inside, a wonderful aroma filled the room. While I can give you the basic marinade for all of the meats: olive oil, lemon, rosemary, and salt, I can’t pass on Loreno’s patience and passion for grilling. After all, he built his own grill from steel.

First the chicken:

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

Followed by boneless pork chops and sausages:

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

Followed by steak:

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

Then the salad and tomatoes picked from the garden.

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

When Loreno finally joined us, he entered the room to a well-deserved standing ovation.

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

When I asked if he had had anything to eat, he assured me that he is the primary tester/taster of all things on the grill. So I just filled his glass.

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

Loreno sat next to Len and me, and we chatted non-stop for over an hour. He speaks not a word of English, yet we talked about life, the challenges and joys it can bring, and so much more. His family, many of whom were at the table, and Fernanda’s, are not actually related through blood, but there are no stronger ties. And now they too have wrapped their arms around us.

©Blogginginitaly.com Carlo and Cousin Giuliano

©Blogginginitaly.com Carlo and Cousin Giuliano

When I think about these gatherings, I am always reminded of how happy I am that my grandparents came from Italy. The love and friendship that I experience here is amazing, yet not surprising. Len and I are both fortunate to have grown up with similar Italian traditions: big family gatherings, always too much food, lots of stories and laughter, everyone talking and listening at the same time, and always room for guests, who just like here, often became extended family members. And fortunately, we continue to experience and pass on these wonderful traditions, both sides of the ocean.

After dinner, we enjoyed just picked fresh figs from the garden, another thing that my grandmother loved…

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

Along with limoncello, although we had to wait for it to thaw a bit!

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

Thanks to our hosts for an incredible dinner and evening, and most of all, for their friendship and love.

©Blogginginitaly.com

©Blogginginitaly.com

Ciao,
Judy

 

 

5 Responses to “A Familiar Italian Gathering”

  1. jean August 31, 2016 at 3:49 PM #

    You both are living examples of the Mae West quote “Too much of a good thing can be WONDERFUL!”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. faclarsen@aol.com August 31, 2016 at 7:43 PM #

    Fabulous !!!

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Royce Larsen September 1, 2016 at 1:03 AM #

    I am beginning to feel like part of the family!
    After looking and all of the delicious food I was so full I could not eat my bed time snack
    Thank you

    Liked by 1 person

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