"As travel pushes me forward, memory keeps dragging me backward." - Frances Mayes.
When I think of autumn in Tuscany, the first memory that comes back to me is not a sight but a taste, from many years ago: It was well past lunchtime when I finally found a tiny family-run restaurant in the remote countryside. Inside was quite simple - no tourists but a few local people chatting together. I was feeling a little out of place and not sure what to order, but apparently that was not a concern for a madam who seated me. She said something rapidly in Italian, with "Va bene?" (Is it all right?) at the end. And she disappeared into a kitchen.
There I was waiting... and waiting for quite a long time, wondering if I had ordered anything at all. At last, she came out with a generous portion of warm risotto with porcini mushroom. Risotto does take a long time to cook, and she must have made it from scratch for me. Her smile and the creamy risotto with the earthy flavor of this autumn delicacy of Tuscany gave me a big smile, too.
Here's recipe of a similar dish (courtesy of Food Network). Buon appetito!
Cortona, Italy V
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Media: Original watercolor on paper
Image Size: 11.5 x 8.25 inches (29 x 21 cm)
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