Going on a Pilgrimage

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Norway+Italy=Polar Opposites

I have to say how very impressed I am with Norwegian people. Their culture, their mentality, and their hyper state of logic is so refreshing. On the outside, Norwegians can seem a bit curt and maybe not quite warm (and they will be the first to tell you about that). But when you talk with someone, or know them personally, they are the most honest, most open, warm, caring, jovial and straightforward people I have ever known. Time after time, from strangers in grocery stores, to colleagues of my step-father, to paramedics, Norwegians prove themselves to be stand-up, caring people....more

Norway is Big Sky Country

Last Day of 2010

Let's-a-Make-a-Meat-a-balls!

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Autumn in Italy

After spending a good deal of time in northern Norway, my return to the splendors of Italy was certainly welcome. But this time, instead of returning to Sicily, I returned to La Spezia, in northern Italy, about an hour east of Genoa and an hour west of Pisa. Markets in Italy are always seasonal, so what you see is what is best. It is fall now, and that brings with it some of my favorite foods. Fresh pumpkin, mushrooms, grapes, apples, chestnuts...these are the fruits of fall....more

What's a Nutritionist to do?

My whole life I grew up thinking that Europe was the seat of natural medicine. Homeopathy was a household word, pharmacies sold natural products and herbal remebdies....more

Viola di Mare

Here in Sicily, Sunday is the day you have lunch with your family. It doesn’t matter what is going on or how busy you may be--you always go home for Sunday lunch (not lunch by US standards, though....more

Wild Capers!

My husband and I went out for a passeggiata after lunch today. In Italy, the passeggiata, or evening stroll, is an integral part of life. If you live in the city, you do it downtown and look at the shops; if you live by the sea, you do it along the lungomare, which is a promenade that stretches along the coast. After getting a gelato and enjoying the sun reflecting off the water, we went back to the car to take a drive....more

Making Watermelon Jam

In Sicily, summertime brings with it so many wonderful things. Hot weather, cool beaches, fresh gelato, vacation time and the biggest angurie (watermelons) you have ever seen. Now, those super huge melons are something we don’t often see anymore, as the smaller hybrids are what we usually see these days. Genetic modification with zucca (squash) plants, which makes a much smaller, more manageable sized and seedless melon has pretty much overtaken the market. And really, how many one to two person households can consume a 15 pound melon anyway?...more