Traveling is a big learning process. It breathes new knowledge and hope to my tired brain sometimes. When I am cooped up in my little world of computer-cooking-home, my mind and body scream for a break at the same time. It's a relief to close the computer and look at other beautiful subjects to photograph and to eat new kinds of food. I need it. I can feel the difference in me when I go home and attack my work again. There is inspiration to help me move forward again.
When I went to Umbria a couple of times a few months ago, I ate very well and I also took home a lot of cooking tips and inspiration with me. Because of its proximity to Rome, Umbria is one of my favorite Italian regions for weekend destinations. The wines, oil, food, medieval hamlets and the magnificent vistas that greet me at every turn of the road reminds me of how beautiful things and life can be. I have to admit, it's a perfect remedy to erase that grumpiness crawling inside me at times.
When my family and I go around, you will mostly likely see us in four kinds of places in the towns we visit. A restaurant, if we happen to be there at lunchtime, the children's playground, the churches (to visit) and the one that bore my kids and husband to death, the shops of the local gastronomic products.
I remember a certain shop in Spello, one of the towns we visited, where both kids willingly entered (there was nothing more insteresting outside I think) and tried the biscuits, bread, oil and jam that they were producing. My son is developing a very good sense of taste in determining good food and I like making him try things with us. My husband and I listen to what he thinks because, 100% of the time, he's always right. I am hoping his little sister would follow his footsteps too. In the shop, the proprietor shared a lot of valuable information in making preserves, jams and what a normal Umbrian eats for breakfast. I loved that part because I am particularly obsessed with breakfasts. In fact, I made a post about it recently.
Because the trip inspired me, I went to work on what I learned as soon as we arrived home. I tried my hand in cooking drunken dried figs that I put on slices of warm bread, drizzled with extra virgin olive oil (a good one!) and dollops of ricotta. If you click on this link, it will take you to recipe in She Knows. It's a site where I develop recipes. Whereas with this link, you will see my profile page where there's a complete list of all the recipes made for them. Thanks and have a wonderful week!