Why are kitchens so big in America? Research shows as kitchens get larger with every possible appliance and convenience, there is muchless cooking happening. We spent a month in Italy, our house was quite large but our kitchen was tiny as are most in Italy, and Europe for that matter. And they cook! It was amazingly efficient, refrig, sink, stove on one wall and directly opposite with just enough turning room an island with ample surface and cabinets underneath plus room for 2 stools. True, a dishwasher was not included but could have been with a sacrifice of cabinet space. Nor a microwave, more easily fixed by including under the hood. Had some nice details, like the cabinet above the sink held a drying rack that dripped directly into the sink. Perfect, and kept the counters free. And a large window on the side that allowed plenty of light.
Here we prepared typically Italian summer meals. Fresh from our market, Tuscan melon, (our cantaloupe) prosciutto and salamis seemingly unending varieties, those delicious huge green Italian olives, cheeses like Parmesan, (dolce which is sweeter for us) again so many varieteis, capra which is goat, pecorino which is sheep and those just a start. Bread from our bakery each morning. Lettuces, fruits and of course tomatoes in shapes we had never seen. Exploring the markets in each town, the danger was always in buying more than we could possible eat. Confession here, we didn’t cook our own pasta despite the infinite selection of boxed. We couldn’t resist the handmade in every restaurant. On our own square, made by the mother of the owners, who would come in daily and prepare tiny tender filled morsels. Confession #2, sometimes we had pasta twice a day.