Grab a Bunch of Gobbi

market

They should be soft. They will have a slightly bitter taste.

Grab what?

They look like celery stalks. Except much bigger. Except for the leaves that sprout along the edges.  And really except for the spines along those same edges that make gobbi look more like a medieval weapon of war than a food. Continue reading

The Cheese of Forgiveness

 

don oreste benzi

Asked how I feel today, I’ll say, “Fresh as a fish.”

It’s a figure of speech I heard on the TV yesterday. The program examined the quality and safety of fish from the Adriatic. We were at an inland restaurant eating brassato, a braised beef dish our friend Lidia makes. At noon, for the workers who come for lunch, Lidia turns on TV news. The focus was on fish. This was long-form journalism. Three journalists in a studio were importantly holding forth, along with reporters and scientists in the field hoisting octopi aloft by their tentacles, displaying crates of sole, mussels, and clams; a full half-hour expose on fish. Given my limited fish vocabulary, I couldn’t follow much of what they were saying. I recognized a few fish names; every so often I heard inquinamenti, the Italian word for pollutants. Continue reading