Mangia, mangia, mangia

Italians love to talk about food, particularly while they're eating it. Here are my top five favorite things to eat from the month of February. Watch this space at the beginning of next month for my new faves.

5. Pasta with chickpeas and pesto. Cook up some pipete or other small pasta. Dump in a can of washed and drained chickpeas and a couple tablespoons of pesto. Top with cheese, nuts, etc.

4. Crepes filled with asparagus and smoked provalone. I had this dish at a restaurant, and it was lovely. Smoked provalone is one of my all-time favorite cheeses.

3. Coconut gelato. I really don't like ice cream, but there's something about coconut flavor that's truly divine. Why don't they make coconut ice cream in the US?

2. Green salad with cannellini beans and tuna. For a quick and light dinner, toss some lettuce with beans and drained tuna. Add tomatoes and walnuts if so inclined and top with oil and vinegar. Pair with polenta or bread for a filling meal.

1. Deep-fried risotto balls. These are so unbelieveably terrible for you - it's a tangerine-sized ball of risotto stuck together with a little tomato sauce and a delicious center of mozzerella... deep-fried until the batter is crispy and the cheese is melty.


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