When we were in Italy, we took a cooking lesson from Aurelio at the Villa Ducale in Taormina, Sicily. We decided to celebrate Karen’s birthday by recreating the dishes. For the dinner we made fennel and blood orange salad, caponata, pasta alla Norma and veal involtini. We started with a mixed antipasto plate and bruschetti with tomato jam or chopped liver. For dessert I made Sarah’s great tiramisu.
I think it turned out pretty well. Karen was happy with it and that was the point seeing as how it was her birthday. Although we started the day before, by the time Karen and George arrived we were exhausted. That always happens. It seems standing in the kitchen for hours is really hard on the feet, hips and lower back.
Today we started cooking for our Passover seder on Sunday. I know, I know, we were supposed to do it on Wednesday. But since John had his tooth pulled on Tuesday and the kids are busy with their lives, our holidays are always celebrated when we can all get together. Anyway, John is braising lamb shanks and I am making a carrot souffle, asparagus saute and Karen’s great do-ahead mashed potatoes. Sarah is bringing a parsley salad and Ryan and Leigh are making dessert. Maybe with all this help we won’t be tired out.