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Gia-Gina Across the Pond

So I've decided to follow my husband to his native Italy. Follow our adventures as we eat, drink, travel, adapt to and explore this remarkable country. Part food blog, part photo blog but mostly my rants and raves. After our two years in Italy, we relocated across the Atlantic "pond" and are back in the States.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

As American as Apple Pie

Today as I groggily went downstairs to let Zavier to his business in the courtyard of our apartment, our portiere (apartment custode) let me know I had a tiny package. Could this be this be the ironing board clips from Suzanne or the dry baking goods from Sara? It was the latter.

Two weeks ago Deme and I decided it was time to stock our pantry with essentials. We head to Carrefour, a very large grocery store, complete with an optical, gelateria, tires for sale, a deli where you can purchase a whole leg of prosciutto; you get the picture, like a gourmet Costco. This place was about 1 ½ football fields long. I knew I would be able to find most of what I needed here. I found countless types of pasta, dried and pressed mullet roe (called bottarga), dried porcini, salt for the dishwasher, brillo pads and tons of other stuff I needed, except a few American baking essentials. We combed the isles for baking soda, baking powder, and brown sugar, molasses, and corn syrup just to name a few. I found chocolate chips, cocoa powder, sugar and flour but that was all. So I placed a call to Sara; she and Chris promptly put together a little baking package for me. I have been having a chocolate chip cookie craving for the past month. Sara told me when she heard craving she set to work grocery shopping. See the results below:


At 2:08 AM, Blogger rowena said...

Your chocolate chip cookies are making me hungry! As for the baking stuff...I found baking soda, uhm...bicarbonato di soda? Something like that in the area for cleaning solutions. And as for the baking powder or lievito in polvere or per il dolce, I found in the little area that sells baking stuff. As for molasses, it took me a bit of sleuthing and I finally found it at a health foods store. Oh goodie, I can't wait until we can get together so we can go food shopping!

At 2:50 AM, Blogger rowena said...

I forgot to ask you last night...may I put your link up on my page under Living/Traveling Aboard (or recipe blogs if you prefer). It gives more insight and interesting reading about living 'for real' in Italy instead of the Hollywood version of rebuilding decrepit farm houses and living under the hot Tuscan sun!

At 8:29 AM, Blogger barbara said...

Yes, baking soda is bicarbonato di sodio, but we use much more "Lievito per dolci" (the best is Lievito Bertolini! Trust me!). I've never used molasses but when I need it I prepare "sciroppo" putting sugar in a small amount of boiling water.
In Italy you can't find also another essential ingredient: sour cream, so you can't bake a delicious and american style cheesecake.
- Gosh, I'm hungry now! -

At 10:58 AM, Blogger Gia-Gina said...

I need buttermilk for my famous chocolate cake recipe but can' t find it, I can make buttermilk manually though, if I ever find cream cheese, not sour cream, I will make you a cheese cake.

At 2:26 PM, Blogger Sara said...

Maybe you would have better luck shopping at a bakery store for baking items, like specialty flours and things.

At 9:58 AM, Blogger barbara said...

..buttermilk... mmm.. I don't know what it is...

At 12:20 PM, Blogger Eulinx said...

no buttermilk in Italy, unfortunately they don't sell it! I didn't even know what it was until I went to Germany!!
Ciao : )

At 12:37 AM, Blogger barbara said...

oh, all right. I'm not so ignorant then!! =)


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