In This Issue
Strange Things They Eat in Italy
Easter Lamb - Keep it Simple
Fresh Pecorino and New Fava Beans
"A tavola non si invecchia mai" -

At the table one
never ages
Roasted Rack of Lamb

Stars from Silvana's farm

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Strange Things They Eat in Italy
Just in time for Easter we've decided to resurrect our column on strange, weird and unusual things you may find in Italy that are considered edible. 

First up, and my personal favorite:
Stuffed Chicken Necks! 
I saw these in a butcher shop in Siena, where they're considered a delicacy.  The chicken neck is deboned and stuffed with a forcemeat of chicken pieces and other things.  It's the head that really makes it though!

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Arriva La Primavera!    
Primavera - "spring" in Italian -  is in full swing with its blooming flowers, budding trees and fresher, lighter foods.   In this newsletter we feature some of our favorites - succulent spring lamb, fresh pecorino cheese with  fava beans and baby spring greens with mint and peas.
Roasted rack of lamb with a salad of crisp greens, spring veggies and herbs will help to keep Easter simple this year. Click here to learn how to make it.   
Buon Appetito!
Gina and Mary
Fresh Pecorino and Fava Beans
Cacio e Bacelli Pecorino e Fava Beans
In Italy, many things are done in old-fashioned ways - growing vegetables, caring for animals,
cooking traditional dishes - that inevitably tie the people to the seasons.

Spring is a time of renewal
and many spring dishes reflect the  season. Egg-rich dishes and desserts are a result of an abundance of eggs the chickens lay as the days get warmer and longer. Lamb shows up on menus, often with fried spring artichokes. In Tuscany, one of my favorite spring pairings is fresh pecorino, or sheep's milk cheese, and fresh fava beans - cacio e bacelli in Tuscan dialect - that is the perfect example of how the simplicity of a seasonal dish belies the complexity of nature.

Most of us are far removed from the farm and little nuances of life tied to the land frequently escape and astound us when we learn of them.  In the second year I lived in Italy, it came as a revelation to me that in order for a sheep, or any animal, to give milk, it has to have a baby every year.   Tuscany is a big producer of pecorino, or sheep's milk cheese, and I learned the facts of natural cheese making when my friend, Silvana, closed her dairy in the late autumn. She explained to me, as if I was a small child, that in late summer a ram is put in with the sheep to impregnate them; once the ram's job is done, he's put back out to pasture until the next year.
When a Tuscan is up to his ears in work he here to jump to blog. Fava Beans