A Perfect Italian Lunch

Happy Easter (again!)

Last Monday I was home and my mother prepared the most perfect lunch ever. And when I looked back at the photos, I realised that not only was it perfect – it was completely Italian, too.

Have you ever tried fresh, raw fava beans with real pecorino romano, that is so roman it’s almost spicy?

What about the fresh zingy fennel and orange salad?

The next photo needs no explanation. Suffice to say that that white gold nugget there in the middle is buffalo mozzarella.

Instead, a side note to the following photo. In Italian, this vegetable is called agretti, barba del frate or even liscari. What I didn’t know was its English name, Salsola soda, and the fact that it was an fundamental element in the Italian art of glass making. From this spinachy-earthy-mineraly plant, soda ash was extracted and soda ash was used to lower the melting point of glass so as to be more efficiently moulded. What a story, huh?

And finally, we ate. The bread was homemade wholegrain bread. And guess who made it? Nope, not me.

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