Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Dave The Mad Bomber!

I will admit it, I was addicted to cooking shows.  I say was addicted as  here in Italy I find their cooking shows boring and limited mostly to  Italian dishes.    American palates are more adventurous  enjoying food from all over the world using ethnic ingredients.  Back in the U.S. I watched a lot of Food Network shows  and I also enjoyed others, like the shows where the host eats bugs, and other roadkill items, or the one where the host is challenged by the clock to eat a pile of food that would feed a  famished army.  I was a fan of Emeril until Food Network left older viewers and went and changed directions and pulled his show off the air.  He had a lot of followers and brought a lot of interest into cooking your own food from scratch.   He showed people how easy it is to cook something not out of a box.  

Yellow Tag says chicken broth for 1 euro
But there is none to be found here.
One thing I saw that was pushed on viewers was chicken broth, and I believed that chicken broth was indispensable in Italian homes.  I was brain washed into believing that chicken broth is a big deal in Italy.  Nothing could be further from the truth!   I found this out on my first shopping trip to my local market in Padova.  Chick broth was absent from the shelves.  They had beef broth, vegetable and meat broth and other similar items, but no chicken.  I searched other stores and had the same bad luck.  Finally I gave up, and use a mix called Mr. Mix because it does not have monosodium glutamate and tastes excellent.

Finally, Chicken Broth

Later,  I did find chicken broth in one store in Padova, and through my discussions with Italian friends, I now I have several sources.  But Isn’t it strange to hear how important  chicken broth is to Italians and then not find it!  In this photo you can see a display of broths.   Now I have less trust those Italian food experts , much like I have less trust in CNN to report real news.

The great majority of Italians do not have time to make stock from chicken bones, and my belief is that they would not know how.  I am not sure what their source is.  In the photo above that I took in my store where it is found,   look closely.   Even though advertised, it is not found.  Was it Black Friday for chicken broth?  The word of the day is pollo, and it stands for chicken.

Another thing more difficult to find here is lasagna pasta.   My Punto store, near my home has none.   I would have thought that every brand of pasta would sell its own lasagna pasta.     Maybe people here make their own?    Another blog in the future.  
My point here is, Let the Viewer Beware.  One or two trips over here does not make those tv chefs experts.  Maybe a year would do it, as during the year different crops of vegetables become available.  So they would learn how to cook them Italiano!
                                                 Part Two

I like to cook. I like to create, and I like to explore different foods.  When considering to move to Italy, after a few trips back and forth, I decided to save a pile of Euros and buy my Kitchen Aid Mixer in America and bring it back in my baggage.  I was, at that time, able to bring two suitcases and a large carry on.  My new Kitchen Aid went in one suitcase, and the pasta making parts went into my carry on.  

If you don't have one of these, look into getting one.
Making your own fresh pasta is fun.
At the airport as the metal detector line snaked along, I was wondering what would happen when all that metal went through the machine.  Sure enough, they  made me step aside, and the workers all backed up, one fellow remarking it looked dangerous.  They asked me to unpack and open the carry on.  I was smiling as I fumbled to open the bag and bring out the box.  I pulled out the pasta maker part, and the other pasta cutters to show them that I wasn’t a terrorist bomber.  They looked quite relieved. 

My mixer, in the checked suitcase,  also made it through, and I could see that someone had opened my bag as they left an official paper stating it was searched.  I felt relieved while going through customs in Italy I was motioned to go on through the exit.  BTW I had to build a special electrical device to change Italian electrical current to what my American machine needs.  50 euros did it!  I run my Kitchen Aid Blender off that current also.  The device is large and very heavy, but does the trick.

My mixer cost a bit over 200 dollars at the time.  Shown here are some different colored mixers  in a large store in Padova with the price listed below.
626 Euros!  Ouch!

Big Difference!  You can see why I brought mine over the pond.   It works like a champ.

There are other brands of mixers, mostly German made, and not as expensive as Kitchen Aid.  I think it was a good thing to pack and bring it here.

This is my 63rd post.  Thanks for reading.  Please, leave a comment if you have time.  Go to where it says, "no comments".  

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