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Florence: Day 35

We had such a great experience hiking up to the Abbazia di San Miniato al Monte the other day, that we wanted to share the same experience with Kyle & Lindsay. We explored the church and the cemetery, enjoyed the amazing views of Florence from the church and the Piazzale Michelangelo and trekked through the rose garden on our way back down the hill.

We ended the experience with a late lunch at the same restaurant Joe and I had discovered, Fuori Porta.

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We all started the meal sharing insalata di baccelli con pecorino marzolino which was a fava bean salad with the version of fresh pecorino called marzolino. Lindsday wanted to try fava beans while here and I was excited to compare the flavors to when Joe and I enjoyed marzolino and fava beans at home (see Florence: day 6). It was a delicious spring appetizer, and great start to the meal!

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For our mains, we had salumi toscani della macelleria Tozzetti di Mercatale (Tuscan cold meats from the butcher Tozzetti Mercatale),

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ravioli di pecorino e pere con fonduta di parmigiano e nocciole (ravioli stuffed with cheese and pears with melted parmesan cheese and hazelnuts),

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insalata di polpo con patate (octopus and potato salad),

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and pici con ragu’ bianco di faraona (pasta with guinea fowl ragu).

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We were given Tuscan bread and extra virgin olive oil with our food, so those accompaniments with the Tuscan meats were delicious! The pear ravioli were really rich and slightly sweet. The octopus and potato salad was fresh and light. And the guinea fowl ragu was super comforting. The entire meal from this restaurant was fabulous again!

After resting in the afternoon and then heading back out to explore more of the city, we decided to be adventurous and try a local street food staple, Lampredotto. This is a sandwich made of boiled cow’s stomach served with some spicy seasoning or sauce and a salsa verde, a sauce made of extra virgin olive oil and fresh herbs. We bought one sandwich for the four of us to split, knowing that we might not enjoy it. The first bite was pretty good, but I had to really distract myself from thinking about what I was actually eating. The second bite was further into the sandwich and I got a lot more lampredotto and less bread than the first bite, and at that point I didn’t enjoy it. We all took 2-3 bites, but couldn’t finish the sandwich. I can see that if you grew up eating these, they would be extremely hearty and comforting, but not being used to eating something like this, we all had a textural and mental issue eating the cow’s stomach. I’m proud of us for trying!

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After all we had eaten, we decided just to spend the evening on the patio again munching and drinking wine. In addition to the usual meats, cheeses and olives, we decided to make crostini. Earlier in the afternoon we brought Kyle and Lindsay to Eataly so they could compare the store with the one in Chicago. We found a small jar of salsa tartufata (a black truffle relish) for only a few euro, so we bought that and some rustic bread for a fun treat for the night. We sliced the bread, topped it with a mild fresh pecorino and some salami and then some of the salsa tartufata. We toasted them in the oven and experimented with putting the truffles on before or after the roasting (we decided a little of each was best). The crostini were extremely enjoyable!

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