Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Desparately Seeking Spaghetti

No surprise, I am thinking about food again. I'm sure it's fuelled by my reignited love of watching cooking shows + my current access to the food channel. Without obligations or self-restraint, I'm sure I could spend the whole day watching. I have so many new ideas of foods I'd like to try but it's somewhat frustrating that as my mouth waters, I don't currently have my own kitchen to work in. All my great kitchen wedding presents are packed away in boxes at the moment. Sigh.

The food that has been on my mind for weeks is Spaghetti, more specifically, my mom's spaghetti. Never mind that I used to call it Basghetti...but what is basghetti...er...spaghetti without sauce? (Or if you want to impress you Italian friends, "gravy.") My mom's spaghetti sauce is the best. It is so savoury and flavorful. You can smell it throughout the house. Like in the old cartoons, the aroma takes on a life of its own, putting you in a trance, luring you against your will towards the kitchen to taste it.

Fortunately, I watched her cook it enough times over the years that I almost know it off by heart. Of course mine isn't nearly as good. I mostly blame my lack of experience though; it's also fair to say that some of the problem is the availability of the right kind of meat. Italian sausage is hard enough to find here. I think spicy Italian sausage might be nigh-on impossible since spicy food isn't a huge part of food culture in NZ. Cest la vie. Though, I have to say, a good sauce would be worth moving back home for. I can see it now: being able to buy the perfect coil of meat. Letting it simmer away till all the flavors have come out. Violin music would be playing as Rhys and I sit down to eat. Somehow, unbeknownst to us, we would start eating either end of the same string of spaghetti. We would be so absorbed in the great food that we wouldn't notice until it's too late and...Ok maybe not, especially since I'm very bad at sharing good food. I am, however, willing to just have a spaghetti night at my parent's house… with everyone eating from their own plate.

In the end, all this thought of pasta has triggered a new food goal for me; I would love to try making my own pasta. I think ravioli would be a fun one to try. How about you, are there any foods you've always wanted to make for yourself?


  1. This has gotta be my favorite post so far. Sentimental favorite, at least. Guess what I'm making for dinner tonight? No lie. We must be having mother/daughter ESP. I think I've made everything, or tried to, that I've ever wanted to. But you never know what might be around the corner... xox

  2. Aww, what a nice tribute to your mama's cooking. If you want to see some cool homemade pasta, check out what Francesca at FuoriBorgo made last spring:

    Francesca's Floral Ravioli

  3. Thanks Leslie, I will definitely check it out.

  4. Darn, it's too late to knock up at your parents house now. :D I don't think I've ever had your mom's spaghetti but everything else she makes is amazing.

    Maybe your mom will can some sauce and mail it to you? Because she's just that awesome.

  5. Okay, if this doesn't motivate me to cook great stuff and smell up our house amazing, nothing will! Love the way you describe it all. And the pic you put at the top? That makes me smile too just remembering the scene from the movie. Happy Basghetti to you:)

  6. ""Homesickness starts with food," said Che Guevara,"- I read that in one of short (and true) stories in my "Travelers tales to Spain" book upon first arriving here. I've been living in Spain for almost two years. Although I am very happy here, and plan to stay for a while, I can always tell when it's time for a trip back home- and it starts with a rumbling in my tummy.... usually for my Mom's food :) Love this post! So cute you and your Mom are blog friends. It's such a great way to keep in touch overseas.

  7. Mmm... you're making me really want spaghetti now. Isn't it amazing how memories of family are so contained in food? It's like that with me and my mom's homemade bread. Just one whiff and I'm a kid again.

    P.S. I'm definitely going to add "Otto" to my list of must-read books! It sounds like something I'm going to love.

    P.P.S. As I was navigating to your blog, I saw "Ingrid Michealson" listed under your favorite music... I LOVE her! Saw her in concert last March and she was just amazing.

  8. Lindsay - love that quote. It's so true what you said. It's very similar for me living in NZ; love it but wish I could visit home more often.

    Emily- It's so funny; I've had lots of people tell me this week how I made them want spaghetti. It's almost as rewarding as a mischievous pastime of mine in which I try to get songs Rhys hates stuck in his head. Speaking of music, it's so cool that you love Ingrid Michaelson too and so lucky that you got to see her in concert.