Monthly Archives: August 2010

In which I get to play with sprinkles

Today at the bakery, once all the bread was done and it was a reasonable hour to be awake, we made crostate.

The crostate are for a party tomorrow at the local retirement home.  Good stuff.

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Filed under Bakery, Bread, Cookies, Fruit, Italian, Pastries, Travel

Vino, pizza, baba e cantucci

Thus begins my final week here in Castellina.  I am so dreadfully sad when I think about leaving.  So instead, I’m going to think about all the things I have done this past weekend.

Let’s see…  I saw an incredible view of Florence.

I started shopping for wine to bring home. Found myself in the cantina below the wineshop.

This is a cave I would not mind getting trapped in.  Creepy? Yes. But it’s filled with wine. So it would still count as a win.

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Filed under Bakery, Beer and Vino, Bread, Cake, Cookies, Italian, Travel

In the name of research!

Yesterday we went into Siena. There are a ton of pasteccerie selling all sorts of traditional Tuscan and Sienese sweets, so naturally I had to check them out.  All in the name of research for the future bakery of course.

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La festa del cocomero

Today was a watermelon festival.

Curious as to what that is? I was too.

Apparently it includes a big market during the day, little children selling their old toys on the street, and live music in the piazza in the evening.

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Filed under Fruit, Italian, Travel

Chocolate Chip Cookies? Yes, please.

(I didn’t realize how fuzzy these pictures were until I uploaded them. Sorry!)

I am all about these cookies.  These are my go-to, friend-making, all-around best chocolate chip cookies, and I decided it was time for their Italian debut. Except I got a little over-zealous while in town picking up ingredients and told everyone I knew that I would bring them some.  But like I said, this is how I make friends.

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Filed under Bakery, Beer and Vino, Chocolate, Cookies, Italian, Travel

Lost in Siena

On Wednesday I got lost in Siena. Sort of on purpose.

We arrived in Siena early Wednesday morning for the market. I had to postpone my usual five hour nap after work, but we stopped for cappuccini on the way so I was all hyped up on sugar and caffeine and totally good to go.  At the market, which is huge, Nana and Papa Tom showed me their usual meeting place and we all planned to be there in two hours.  More than enough time to shop.  And shop I did…for about 20 minutes. Then I found my way to the edge of the city (the market is a little on the outskirts).  I was ready to explore.

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Pensieri sulle cose Italiane

These past couple of days have been a whirlwind of speaking Italian, meeting new friends, and of course making bread. I feel like I’m becoming very much a part of the town, and I am quite content here.  But then I start to get that anxious feeling of knowing I’ll have to leave soon, even though I have another three full weeks left. But I suppose that’s a good feeling to have; it doesn’t let you waste any time.

I’m happy to say that my Italian is improving! I had my first dream that was totally in Italian last night too.  And when my bakery friends talk to each other or make fun of me, I can actually follow along! (Most of the time). Now I can laugh with them and respond back to their jokes. And the best part is, I can actually interact with the customers who come in for bread.  I even work the register now!

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