12/1 Jowl, Jyunkei – Served at our favorite meat-on-sticks place in Osaka, Jowl was a tough and well-seasoned beef-type meat that I enjoyed thoroughly.
12/3 Margherite Pizza – Margherita Pizza is like a cheese pizza, but in Italy, it’s totally different. It’s the best pizza I’ve ever eaten. Who’d have thought I enjoyed basil so much?
12/4 Cornetto a la crema, Spinach and Ricotti Ravioli, Italian beer – Italian beer is great, full bodied. I forget the brand I had. Crème-filled croissants (the Cornetto) are a new favorite, and the ravioli was a surprising success. I’ll have to try more spinach dishes.
12/5 Spinach Alfredo Shells and Sausage Penne Pomadora – Once again, spinach was a success. As long as it’s not slimy out of a can, I seem to enjoy it. The sausage dish was lighter than expected, and the native Italian olive oil really added a lot.
12/7 Prosciutto Pizza, Lasagna – A nice salami-type pizza, not as spicy as pepperoni but more flavorful. Italian lasagna has more cheese than sauce, very little meat…I think I prefer Indi’s homemade lasagna.
12/9 Taralli, Burrotado, Gorgonzola & Romano Rotelli – OMG Taralli. They are these spicy little bread circles made by grandmothers in the south of Italy. I LOVE THEM. The Rotelli was amazing as well…the pure local ingredients really add an intangible to familiar dishes.
12/10 Gorgonzola Gnocchi, Tiramisu – Gnocchi is another instant hit. I look for it everywhere I go now. And fresh Tiramisu? Better than chocolate cake. Seriously. Favorite dessert ever. I’m dancing in my seat just thinking about it.
12/11 Nutella, Apricot Juice, Tramezzini (ham and mozza), Spritz, Couscous w/ chick peas zucchini yellow peppers and tomato sauce, wild boar salami, Spicy Italian pork salami – No, I’d never had Nutella before. It was good, yes, but I still prefer my peanut butter. Tramezzini is a little white-bread sandwich wrap that is all over Italy; good, if a bit basic. Spritz is a local Triaminic-flavored alcoholic beverage that I enjoyed moderately. Not a big fan of the couscous, but I gave it the ol’ college try. The Wild Boar and Spicy Pork salamis, however…man. Another “how have I lived without this?” food. Interesting fact: the wild boar sausage was made on a family farm, and very fresh.
12/11 Sardinian Bread, Doner Kebab– The Kebab was good, if nothing else than a variation on a meat-and-bread theme. The pita bread was nice though. Sardinian Bread is delicious!
12/16 Venison Sausage, Czech Goulash, Kofola Cola – Our entry into the Czech Republic was met with a great meal, including Kofola Cola. A cola devised during communist times to combat the forbidden Coca-Cola, it tastes a bit like sarsaparilla. Love it. The ‘goulash’ is more of a beef broth and great on a cold day. Venison sausage is surprisingly tasty.
12/17 Polican Salami, Czech Hot Mustard – Pretty self explanatory, a little spicy and a great snack. I’m going to have to invest in this stuff back home.
12/20 Potato Croquettes – Little deep fried mashed potato spheres. A gift from God.
12/22 Charles Platter – Special Mention to a platter at this restaurant we frequent here: two types of sausage, two types of ham, and a giant pork rib. It’ll cure what ails ya.
12/26 Svickova, Bread Dumplings – Traditional beef cutlet in a crème sauce, topped with a small cranberry garnish. I wasn’t too fond of the sauce at first but the dumplings were remarkable and balanced the meal well.
12/28 Saffron Rice, Bacon Dumpling – The rice was good, but unremarkable. I prefer plain white rice with a little soy sauce. Bacon Dumplings rule.
12/30 Trdlo – A Christmastime delicacy bought at street stalls here in Prague. It’s a strip of yeast dough wrapped around a hot metal cylinder, baked, and rolled in ground almonds and sugar. Yes, it was good. Yes, I wish I had gotten more of them.