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Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!

Food

sahleb

Steaming Sahleb

The mysterious hot sahleb drink is served on Middle Eastern streets throughout the freezing winter months. Often served in outdoor kiosks from large, silver, samovar urns, the drink approximates a pudding-like dessert created out of ground orchid root. You heard right. Orchid root. It’s a thick, fragrant drink that will warm you from the inside-out….

baccala1

Happy Italian Holiday Foods

Just when the family is deep into Hanukkah jelly donuts and potato latkes, Benedetto is directing us toward his compadre culture. It’s not like we celebrated any Italian Christmas traditions for the first 25 years of our marriage, however, the children may be spurring his walk down memory lane in the last decade. So here…

hanukkah1

Kitchen Heat at Hanukkah

I get it, I really do. Hanukkah, the Feast of Dedication, celebrates the cleansing of the Temple in Jerusalem after foreign occupation. When it came time to light the menorah, oil that should have lasted one day lasted eight until more holy oil could be produced. So most every food during the eight days of…

gone1

Where Have All Our Old Haunts Gone?

It’s the holidays and I’m feeling nostalgic. My kids are teens and old enough to understand that I had youthful traditions with my own mother once upon a time. I call a local department store that’s had an in-store café since the 1950s known for sky-high club sandwiches, delicate tea sandwiches, and luscious pies and…

meeting1

Monday Mottoes – #63

Cultural norms vary across the globe. Having lived a lot of life in foreign airport clubs, I can assure you that business people from different countries dress, behave, and follow alternate formats for getting to the bottom line: the making of a deal. I recall explaining to two colleagues at a “business lunch” how I…

birthday1

Sashenka Turns 14

Our youngest, daughter Sashenka, turned 14. It was a week fraught with giddy highs and skipping gait, along with sullen lows. Birthdays never used to do that to her, but as a Russian adoptee, I had heard of this behavior in so many others before. They rued the day they were born because apparently, it…

tea1

Out to Tea

It’s been awhile since I took my two daughters out to a proper afternoon tea. This time, we decided to invite the whole family. Note to self: do not undertake a proper tea with white tablecloths, white-gloved wait staff, and gleaming silver serving pieces unless everyone is first properly rested. (Not a given in our…

food1

Meaningful Family Meals

Benedetto and I were raised in two different types of families. His felt that family meals were important events and did everything in their power to delay dinner until all of the kids came home. My family, on the other hand, came and went with an air of independence, while still enjoying most dinners together….

sub1

On Hoagies, Heroes, and Subs

The 18th century Earl of Sandwich might be turning over about now. His idea of placing a quick meal inbetween two pieces of bread has morphed many times over. In some countries, such as Russia, the “booderbrod” is what we might term an open-faced sandwich. In America, bigger is better, and the sub sandwich reigns….

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Monday Mottoes – #54

Some people are active during the summer. They swim, boat, toss horseshoes, waterski, picnic and barbeque. Oh, sorry—those last two eating events snuck in there by accident. Back to bikeriding, rollerblading, skateboarding, and jogging along the beach or hiking in the hills. Me? Eh. I try to stay out of the sun by baking cookies….

The Daily Dilbert