Dessert diabetes Soups and Stews type II diabetes Vegan Vegetarian

Quick Rice Pudding

While at the Kickstart Intensive Conference I attended last weekend, I tried this delicious rice pudding.

I’m generally not drawn to desserts, but everyone was raving about it, so I decided to try it.  Let me just say there wasn’t any left when I was done.  The chef who prepared it mentioned that making this dessert is a great way to use up leftover rice.  Hope you’ll give it a try 🙂

Dessert Italy Main Course Vegetarian

New Recipes

For all those who are looking for something to do with your bumper crop of tomatoes, I’ve posted some new appetizer and main course recipes.  There’s also a wonderful new salad from sunny Sicily.  I think you’ll enjoy them all as much as my friends and I did Saturday night.

For dessert, I simply took four ripe peaches, peeled and sliced, and mixed them together with  a pint of local blackberries.  Add a teaspoon of lemon juice to keep the peaches from turning brown and a teaspoon of agave nectar for extra sweetness before covering and putting chilling in the refrigerator. Spoon into four bowls and  add your favorite biscotti cookie to each, and it’s summer perfection in a dish:)


Simple Things

Yesterday, I had some visitors from Italy.  My friend Diego brought his grandparents over for a quick visit, and although they don’t speak any English, and I don’t really speak any Italian, we got by great.

Diego’s maternal grandparents were at my house once before.  I had just purchased the place, and it was a wreck.  It had some pretty big structural problems, and ultimately the entire first floor had to be replaced.  Although they seemed to be happy for me as we walked around inside, as soon as they got in the car, they told Diego’s parents that I had bought a money pit.

Six years later, I was so happy to show them how the place turned out.  I think they were surprised 🙂

We opened a bottle of prosecco and a box of biscotti, and I told Diego to have everyone sit in the living room.  When I made it in from the kitchen, I found everyone not in the living room, but already sitting around the dining room table.  It struck me that when most Americans gather with friends, they get comfortable in the living or family room.  But when Italians get together, they do it around the table.  I think I like the table idea more.

Yesterday was a quick and simple get-together, and it was perfect.  By the way, prosecco and biscotti go together very nicely 😉

Dessert Travel

Simple Dessert

Every so often I visit Frances Maye’s blog.  She’s the author of a bunch of books on Tuscany and Italian life, and when I check our her site, I get a taste of la dolce vita. When I checked today, I saw that she was cruising around the Mediterranean, giving onboard talks on Italian life to about 100 people.  What a life!  Not only does she spend half her year in a villa in Tuscany, she gets hired to give a few talks on a cruise, probably being paid handsomely for her time and effort.  Actually, I love her writing style, which draws you into the scenes she so wonderfully describes.   I also greatly respect  her ability to reinvent herself at middle age into a travel guru.  She’s over twenty years into it now, and still going strong.

Now, here in Maryland, it’s almost 90 degrees and 90% humidity.  I work up a sweat by just opening the back door.  Hot and sticky doesn’t begin to describe it, but maybe tomorrow will be a bit cooler.  One can only hope.

It’s strawberry picking time here, so in honor of Frances Mayes, I’m going to give you one of the easiest recipes I know for delicious strawberries.  I know it may sound strange, but the key ingredient is basalmic vinegar.

Basically, take a pint of ripe strawberries, cut them in half, and throw them in a bowl.  Add three tablespoons of a good quality basalmic vinegar to the berries, and  toss to coat.  Put in refrigerator to cool, at least one hour.  I like to bring them to room temperature before serving, as this intensifies the flavor.

I’m not a chemist, but I’ve been told that there’s a chemical reaction that takes place between the strawberries and the vinegar.  The berries come out super sweet, and you hardly taste the vinegar.  You won’t need to add any sugar unless the berries are not quite ready. Just try it!

I always serve these berries with a nice biscotti cookie.  A dark chocolate one with almonds is in the photo, and you can pick them up just about anywhere.  This makes a nice, easy, and light dessert, and goes great with a good cup of coffee.  Enjoy.