More, more, more!

If you have found yourself here, perhaps it is because you clicked on a baby duck and wanted more! Maybe you wanted more of Papa’s Italy? Maybe you wanted more of infinity? Maybe you wanted more of the gelato or the squash flowers or alchemy or Italian food or double vision dopplegangers, or music, philosophy, photography, family, enlightenment, or love? Well, we promised you more, and every month we will have something new for you to think about, possibly consider, and hopefully even share!

If you have found yourself here, and it was not by way of http://www.papasitaly.com, and it was not by way of clicking on a baby duck, that’s ok too. You’re now officially part of Papa’s family, so why don’t you pull up a chair, have a glass of wine, maybe some macaroni pie, a cannoli or two and stay awhile? Please, you look like you haven’t eaten in a week, mangia! Mangia!

So. Now that we have offered more, we take it back. For this next post, we want to hear from you! As you know, one of the main themes of the book “How Do We Love?” is the importance of remembering our ancestors, the lives they lived, and how those lives positively impacted us. In short, we love telling other people’s amazing stories, and, if we may be so bold, we think you do too! If you have something wonderful to share, about the history of your parents, grandparents, or any of your ancestors for that matter, send it to: danielle@papsitalycom. If it meets the “say it out loud” criteria of 1) true; 2) kind; & 3) illuminating, and is 500 words or less, we’ll do our best to share it with the rest of your fellow adventurers on the blog. And each month we will randomly select a story whose author will receive a full color, print version of “How Do We Love?” (which is not available anywhere else! )

That’s almost it for this month, dear one. But – we’re Italian, and of course we can’t leave you hungry. So here, for the masses, is Papa’s recipe for his world famous “macaroni pie”  – to be made with family and friends, standing around the kitchen, listening to Rosemary Clooney’s “Mambo Italiano!” Remember, Italians don’t measure ingredients, so use your best judgment, have fun and go with the flow – no matter what happens it will turn out molto delicioso! Buon Appetito!

Papa’s Macaroni Pie

1. Alot of Leftover, NAKED (i.e., no sauce!), cooked spaghetti, maybe whatever you had left after cooking a whole pound ( that’s a whole box- I like to use angel hair because it ends up cheesier…)

2. Olive oil. A lot because you’re going to use a little in the mix and more in the pan. And-it’s REALLY good for you ( the merits of olive oil in a future post!)

3. Some eggs. If you have about a pound of spaghetti I would use about 6 big eggs.  I like eggs.

4. Cream of Celery soup. Here’ s where I diverge from Papa. I don’t like MSG, so I skip the “of celery soup” part and just use some straight up cream. About ¼ cup. You can substitute soy milk, almond milk, hemp milk if you want – and if you want it to be GROSS. This is Italian cooking, it’s supposed to be rich, so please, let’s stick with the real stuff! (And I am vegetarian, so I can say that. For people who can’t have milk or milk products, I’m sorry 😦 , and I am sorry I have not developed a vegan macaroni pie yet. But if you do create one and its yummy, please send the recipe to me! We’ll make it and post the results and recipe!)

5. CHEESE. Papa used an entire 8 ounce container of grated parmesan. I really like cheese, so I use about two containers per pound of pasta. I like pecorino better than parmesan, but whatever you like works! Sometimes I also throw in some grated asiago or piave vecchio or REAL Italian provolone (like the auricchio provolone at Mazarro’s Famous Italian Market in St. Petersburg, Florida. (www.mazzarosmarket.com)

6. Garlic powder, salt and dried parsley – to your liking.

That’s it! Preheat the oven to 350. Now, crack the eggs, mix them up and add in the cream, and the cheese. Grab the salt, the garlic powder and parsley and mix them in too. The more you mix, the fluffier the pie is. Throw the naked, cooked noodles in an olive oil greased (bottom and sides) cooking pan made for the oven (whatever size fits it all, deep enough to hold all the ingredients) then pour the mixture all over the pasta until it reaches just a little below the lip of the pan. Maybe you had better put a cookie sheet underneath it, just in case of baking overflow… Place it in the preheated oven (even if you don’t preheat it you can tell when its done because it smells AWESOME.) Check on it every 10 minutes or so, until it is cooked throughout. Poke it or slice it to make sure it’s finished. Once it seems like it’s all cooked throughout, then here’s the secret step in the proces: Turn on the broiler and cook the top until its brown and crispy. Pay close attention so it doesn’t burn ( although Papa would say that makes it taste just like grandma’s) but the crispy part is the best part!

Enjoy it warm, with a little salt on it. After you have made it the first time you can change the recipe to make it exactly the way you like it. Mangia! Enjoy!

Ci vediamo la prossima mese! See you next month!

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