Wednesday, 24 April 2013

One Veggie Sandwich for the Road

 "May I bring Pippi's book and my colouring pages too, Mom?" - Maddalena, our daughter, asks me.

I nod.
She is excited.

We have planned a few days off, far from our madding hectic daily routines, in order to experience a slower and more relaxed pace.

We're heading North, towards the mountains, the forests, the lush green parks and the tinkling sounds of brooks and waterfalls.

We live close enough to the Alps to enjoy this kind of landscape at a two hours' car ride from where we live. The place we are going to is so easily reached that it takes less time to go there than to pack our stuff!

But you know, when you have kids, you tend to discard long-distance vacation destinations.

 While M. is packing her toys and books, carefully choosing what to bring with her on the journey to the mountains, I try to put together our snacks and sandwiches for the road trip.

I rely on a fresh loaf of bread, spread a few slices with roasted peanut butter and stuff them with baby spinach leaves, basil and cucumber. At the very last moment I add some sundried tomatoes, to boost the flavour.

As I already know Maddalena won't eat it, I cut some vegetables (carrots+cucumbers) and pick a few items she may like from the pantry: dried fruits (coconut, apples and raisins) and puffed cereals bars.

Our travel snack pack almost done, I get to collect the very last items we need to bring with us.

Though I have organized things properly this time, I now I will forget something at home - it's quite typical of me - but I don't bother too much. 

I know it will be ok. Even in the worst case - even if I actually forgot something REALLY important, our destination is so close I could even come back and get it...

Monday, 22 April 2013

"If you are angry or in pain, separate yourself from anger and pain and watch them.
Externalisation is the first step to liberation. 
Step away and look. 
The physical events will go on happening, but by themselves they have no importance. 
It is the mind alone that matters."

Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj,  "I Am That"

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Sunday brunch yeast rolls

It's not unusual for me to be kneading some yeast bread in the kitchen. Since Maddalena takes some pleasure in joining in, this cooking activity has become one of our favourite rites on Sunday mornings.

Since we wake up pretty early – yes, even on Sunday mornings! – we've got plenty of time to enjoy every little step of the process, which starts around eight o'clock a.m. - soon after my first cup of coffee - and ends around midday, as this bread dough requires a long and slow rise.

The little patience you need during the preparation only enhances the pleasure of having freshly baked fluffy rolls ready for your sunday brunch. It's an effort worth making, I promise.

Being Italians our brunch includes mainly sweet baked goods, like 'crostate' and 'frollini', but we also like to eat some savory dish too, like this one, for example, or a healthy pinzimonio (fresh, raw vegtables chopped into bite-size pieces and served with citronette or other dressings).

Whenever I am looking for some inspiration though, I browse the net, collecting new ideas I like to share on Pinterest.

And what about you, what are your brunch menus like? 

Would you like to give me more brunch ideas? 
I would be happy to pin them on my Pinterest board.
Looking forward to hearing from you.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

"Watch your thoughts; they become words.
Watch your words; they become actions.
Watch your actions; they become habits.
Watch your habits; they become character.
Watch your character; it becomes your destiny."

Lao Tzu
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