Sunday, June 29, 2014

Gena's post: A brief taste of what we ate

The food has been excellent almost the entire trip. We didn’t always get photos because sometimes we were just too hungry or they looked to enticing to wait. I have eaten several things that I never thought I would including:
  • Homemade yogurt (our first hotel provided this every morning)
  • Pizza marinara (just tomato sauce and garlic, and it was delicious)
  • Spaghetti with clams
  • Sheep cheek (tastes like bacon)
  • Octopus rice salad
  • Scampetti with shrimp noodles (search for it on I thought it was going to be shrimp)
  • Venetian Toast aka ham and cheese dipped in a local mayonnaise sauce (This was one of Ryan’s dishes. I was super jealous he got to eat nearly all of it.)
  • Gnocchi with mussels (probably the best pasta dish I had the entire trip)
Taking a picture of our three different types of salad, including the octopus rice salad that was one of Ryan's favorites. 

In a repeat of our honeymoon, I got a plate full of things with eyes and legs, and Ryan had to make it look like "food" before I'd eat it. In a measure of progress, I did actually eat it this time (last time he was sweet enough to simply switch dishes with me). 

Eating Venetian Toast at the Caffe Florian coffee house in Venice. 

Sharing crepes near a canal in Venice. Ryan's favorite was apricot filling; I preferred lemon and sugar. 

Our last night in Venice, Ryan and I stopped at a small restaurant near the fish market district and ordered the mixed seafood grill for two: lobster, salmon, sea bass and a third type of fish we couldn’t quite decipher from our waiter’s English but might have been mahi-mahi. 

Mixed-seafood grill for two. It came out with fish and lobster intact; the waiter took about 10 minutes to de-head, de-scale and de-bone the two fish for us. I don't think he trusted us to do it ourselves.   

We topped that off with Sicilian cannoli that was even better than the cannoli we had seven years ago in Cooperstown, N.Y.
The shell was dipped in chocolate and the filling was topped with candied orange. 

I avoided the tripe (cow intestines) even though Kate said it’s a specialty in Florence. One item you don’t see on the menu a lot is chicken.  Every so often a roasted chicken dish would appear, but it seems that seafood serves the role of poultry over here.

Kate during one of our gelato stops in Rome.
Gelato (Italian ice cream) is the other delicacy we tasted quite often. Between us, Ryan and I had banana, coconut, pink grapefruit, salted caramel, tiramisu, yogurt and berries, lemon, blueberry, and vanilla. At one point, Ryan tried to order a double scoop of blueberry and coffee. The shopgirl diligently scooped up the blueberry without passing judgment. Being a wife of nearly 10 years, I couldn’t keep myself from criticizing the awkwardness of Ryan's choice.
(Ryan’s note: It’s not like they were swirled. I think it would have been fine.)
Once I had piped up, Ryan switched his second flavor to coconut  (because like any husband of nearly 10 years, he knows it's just easier to agree with me sometimes). The shopgirl commented on that being a much better combination -- vindication! And it was worth it – both of us considered coconut to be our favorite of the flavors we tried.

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