Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Pastries and Sweets

Far too much time has passed since I last updated this blog, but now that I've been back in the U.S. for about as long as I was in Italy (4 months or so), I thought I should post some more pictures and reflections from my travels.

I have a terrible sweet tooth, so being in Italy was either one of best or one of the worst places to be, depending on one's perspective. Luckily, I walked everywhere during my time there, so I was able to eat whatever I pleased. Here is just a small sampling of the many sweets I consumed...

Crema pasticceria e fragole (Pastry cream and strawberries)

Millefoglie (Literally "a thousand sheets". Thin sheets of pastry layered with pastry cream.)

Croccante (di noccioline) (This is akin to peanut brittle, but the caramel coating the nuts was slightly more bitter and hard.)

Budino di Cioccolato (Chocolate pudding - a bit more freestanding than the typical American pudding.)

Torta della Nonna and Baba al' Rum (Torta della Nonna, literally "Grandmother's cake", is generally a delicious sweet tart shell filled with pastry cream, sometimes lemon-flavored, and topped with nuts, usually almonds or pine nuts. Here, the tart had lemon cream and almonds. Baba al' rum is a cute little sponge cake soaked in an intense and boozy rum syrup.)

Torta della Nonna (with a big bite taken out)

Schicciata con l’uva (A flat bread studded with crunchy, seeded, sweet-and-sour purple grapes. A fall speciality in in Tuscany.)

Milk Chocolate Toberlone (Well, it's Swiss, but it somehow tasted better in Italy than it does here.)

Gelato (Last one of the summer - mixed berries and yogurt/frutta di bosco e yogurt.)

Castagnaccio (A dense, flat cake made with chestnut flour, rosemary, raisins, and pine nuts. This picture was taken in a dim hotel lobby in Rome.)