Florence: Day 83

Today began the weekend celebration of Father’s Day and Joe’s Birthday, so we started by enjoying our last lunch out at a new restaurant. Buca dell’Orafo was recommended on Giada De Laurentiis’ website with a rave review, also mentioning the chef in the kitchen was an American girl in her twenties (http://www.giadadelaurentiis.com/giada/faves/9/florence). I was intrigued by the chef and figured this sounded promising for a great birthday/father’s day meal!

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We started with the fritto di fiore di zucca e zucchini, or fried zucchini and squash blossoms. I love the fried vegetables in Italy. They are such a treat! These were exceptional.

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Next we split the pasta e fagioli, which is a traditional Tuscan bean soup. It seems the consistency of this soup varies from restaurant to restaurant and household to household. This variation was completely smooth with the exception of the pasta. It wasn’t what I was expecting at all, but it was smooth, creamy and comforting!

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Lastly, Joe was in the mood for a meat sauce, so we ordered the pappardelle al sugo di coniglio, or pappardelle pasta with a rabbit sauce. The texture of the pasta was perfect. And the sauce was hearty, but also tasted of fresh herbs, primarily sage. I don’t find many dishes more comforting than pasta with a meat sauce. This was so good!

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As we are nearing the end of our time in Florence, I had a few things in the freezer at home that needed to get eaten. Specifically, I had some meatballs and marinara sauce. Joe loves meatball subs, so it worked out perfectly to make him a favorite at home for dinner. I just picked up a couple rolls from a local bakery, cooked the meatballs, assembled the sandwiches topping with some fontina cheese and baked in the oven until warm and the cheese melted and started browning. Joe said it was one of the best meatball subs he has had in his life, which is the best compliment I could hope for!

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