When Gabriel and I were living back in Minneapolis as grad student and post doc, we developed high-end taste that exceeded our means. So rather than going out to restaurants, we would stay home, invite people over for dinner and cook. Gabriel is an expert at Greek food. Spanakopita, taramosalata, stuffed peppers, lemon chicken with oregano... I vacillated among Italian, Indian, Mexican and Thai.
When we moved here to Milan, we met a great group of friends who do the same things. One couple is Simone and Valeria who fell in love with Asian cooking, especially Vietnamese, Thai and Japanese while doing their medical internships in St. Louis, MO. They brought back a rice cooker, 12 place settings of chopsticks, and mini bowls for mixing soy sauce and wasabe. They've had Thai dinner parties with fabulous chicken in green curry sauce and roll-your-own-sushi parties. But they also are masters at Italian cuisine. They taught Gabriel how to make a real Bolognese sauce for pasta and now it has become a weekly staple at our house.They taught Gabriel how to make a real Bolognese sauce for pasta and now it has become a weekly staple at our house.The last time they had us over was the day they defrosted their refrigerator. They needed to cook a rabbit and a pheasant that were in the freezer, so they came up with this dinner: The pheasant was cooked in a tomato sauce with capers and olives. The rabbit, in a "battuto" of finely minced carrot, celery, onion and garlic. They were both delicious!