Thinking about how the blending of cultures in our ever shrinking world is so represented by our food. I just saw a recipe for a Banana Date Tahini Smoothie on the PBS Food blog. Mediteranean influences seem to have really taken hold of our imagination and palates. The widespread popularity of Jerusalem and Ottolenghi, The Cookbook have obviously played a role, but the openness to new spices and technique are a by-product of being aware of the fact that we are just one little piece of the puzzle instead of the whole board.
A quote from Ottolengi, The Cookbook made me think of Frank’s mother. They used to arrive with Italian pastries from Lucibello’s in New Haven. Miss those days! She would insist that the leftover pastry be left at room temperature, saying that if you refrigerated them they would get “funny.” We used to laugh when she said that, but it looks like she was right on the mark.
According to the authors of Ottolengi, The Cookbook: “Most dishes come into their own at room temperature or warm. . . This is especially true with cakes and pastries. Their textures and flavors are destroyed beyond salvation though refrigeration.”
Some of us are just learning now what a little Italian Grandmother knew all along.