an italian feast

I'm currently in week two of a brand new job. It's going well so far, but I've been feeling a little overwhelmed as I settle into a new routine, new job, new situation.

Before I started the job, I threw a big dinner party for 9 of my friends in my little apartment. I moved a few tables into the living room for a banquet style table. I borrowed chairs from neighbors. For some reason, I only have sets of 9. Nine chairs, nine wine glasses, nine plates. My neighbors (who also came to the dinner party) let me borrow one extra set of everything.

I decided to make an Italian feast to celebrate.

 

On the menu:

Red wine (lots of it)

Garlic rosemary flatbread (plus a gluten free variety)

Roasted pepper salad with capers, kalamata olives, and garlic

Pasta e Fagioli (my grandmother's recipe)

New York Cheese Cake with Cherry Topping (from Smitten Kitchen)

The recipe for pasta e fagioli (or pasta and beans) is a "recipe". My Mom just knows how to make it. She learned by watching her Italian grandmother and her Mother while growing up. When I asked her for the recipe a few years ago, she sent me a 3 page email describing how to make it. So I have a "recipe", but not in the traditional sense.

The pasta takes a long time to make, but it's worth every minute. It's a lot of work and I don't make it that often--definitely a special occasion treat. And apparently it was so good that I forgot to snap a picture of it. But believe me, it was enjoyed by all.

Someday, I'll sit down and turn my 3 page email into an actual recipe and post it here. But that day is not today. I need to get to bed early...it's supposed to snow tonight and I might need a little extra time to scrape the snow off my car and commute.

My dinner party was a success...in fact, it was so successful that my downstairs neighbor complained about the noise. I guess that's the true definition of a loud Italian feast!