Friday, May 30, 2014

Mangia, Mangia… No Talk, Nurtures’ Too

Last Post for NaBloPoMo for the month; make it a good one; right…?

The last prompt is

Would you feel nervous or confident cooking dinner for a professional chef?

Here is an almost quick answer, many years ago for a turning point birthday, I decided to gift myself with something I always wanted to do; so, full of apprehensive and excitement.

I enrolled in acting school.

It was the best thing I ever did for me …my older self is so proud of that 30 year old me. While attending class I met a bunch of great people, the bunch of us became close, on a summer evening I invited them to come to my home for a get together…of course I cooked, we ate, drank, laughed, discussed movies, acted out scenes and sang. One of my friends even sang, an aria from, LaBoheme`, it was fun. One of the questions was, if we made it as an actor which director would you like to make a movie with; everyone had different answers my director of choice was Ron Howard, thinking he would be the nicest…what can I say, his Richie Cunningham persona still preceded him in my mind.

So there you have it, I like to play it safe, truthfully, I would feel too nervous to cook for a professional chef.  Therefore, no I wouldn't be able to cook for one.

I started out this month challenging myself to write every day for NaBloPoMo, I didn't write on Saturday or Sunday, I really couldn't, but I did write one post on each weekday.  The theme was “nourish”…that is the epitome of Mangia, Mangia…No Talk; that is why I signed up this month.

Our children came to us when they were older…first they visited us for three weeks not knowing the language, the four of us got to know one another…we sent them back to their home, and proceeded to get them back to us, it took us nine months.
Having spent their early years in an orphanage, food was a big deal. When Amelia started speaking English to us, one of the first things that she expressed was that she remembered the first time she came to our house, she did not see any food; well of course she didn't it was all in cabinets and refrigerated.

They were so tiny back then, so brave too; the long trip to come to meet us, I felt dizzy thinking about this. We settled them in, showing them their new clothes and toys; our home was theirs.  While they were playing, I made them pastina – it’s these tiny pastas that actually expands after you cook it, (a cup of dried pastina is all you need for two) almost like a porridge consistency. Add butter and some grated cheese, it can be boiled in water, or any kind of stock, beef or chicken, you can add some tomato sauce too, regardless how it’s made you end up with a soothing bowl of nourishment and satisfaction.

Those two ate a good portion that night and to this day, if they are not feeling well they always ask me to make them some Pastina.
That was where it began, that simple bowl of pastina fed them that evening, the two sat, ate and smiled. Their bellies were full and their spirit at ease. 
Going back to what my daughter told us; Amelia then finished by saying, then you made us pastina, that was so good, mom.

Mangia, Mangia…No Talk!


  1. Marisa, such a nice story.
    I have always wondered about the pastina when I see the box
    at our local grocery and wanted to know what to do with it
    well. now I know maybe one day I will buy it.. I might ruin it though....

  2. oh my marisa.
    sitting here with welling tears in my eyes. not of sadness! just touched by the sheer courage of all four of you! the little ones traveling so far into a land unknown and even the language strange.
    and well...
    i don't have to go on.
    this is a truly touching post. one of your best.
    and the children who i swear look like you and nick just enough to be your own . . .
    well! they're simply adorable!!!! XOXO
    and congrats on finishing the one post every day! i could NOT have done it! ♥

    1. it is almost scary and surreal right ...boy oh boy we said it from the beginning the reminded us of us. James without being told shows everyone he meets respect, shakes hands with his uncles and cousins when he greets them and if he is invited over at a friend's house he greets their parents...Amelia flits and floats everywhere..(like me)

      We have our moments when no one agrees but after we have calmed down i do say to them something like this that i truly believe that we were misplaced and found each other, that deep in my heart I knew i was going to be a mother to three and know in my heart that we were meant to be together.
      they take it in and think I'm just that mom LOL
      thanks for stopping by this one is my favorite too!

  3. it cannot be ruined you will do nieces and nephews started eating this as young as 2 or maybe 3 years old, I don't remember; its the kind of pasta that is spoon fed to the kids perfect for bonding until they are able to feed themselves. Glad you like the post - not what I wanted to write but what came out.



  4. Oh, Marisa, I loved this post. As I was reading, I tried to imagine your own voice, since I've never heard it, and it was clear to me, that it is caring, loving, supportive and warm. Your kids are happy kids; well fed, well cared for and very much loved. How lucky you all are to have one another. And that pastina - pure comfort food!



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Shopping List - April 24,2016

Vegetables/Fruit Bananas .49cents a lb. 1 bunch Tomatoes .99cents a lb. 4 or 5 Eggplants 1.39lb get three String Beans @ .99 cents a pound Avocado @ .99 cents each (2) Mangoes 2 for $3.00 (2) Bag of Eastern Potatoes $1.99 Limes and lemons Mini Cucumbers 1.99 English Cucumbers 2 for $3.00 Romaine Hearts 1.99 Deli/Bakery Pretzel Chips Feta cheese Hummus – Boars head 2 for 5.00 (1) Pita flat bread (Greek) Meat Chicken Cutlets 3.49 a pound Chicken Kabobs 3.99 a pound Dairy/Frozen Mozzarella Shredded Cheese $2.50 Plain Greek Yogurt or Tzatziki sauce (deli) Ricotta Cheese Biazzo $3.99 Almond Milk 2 for 6.00 I need is 1 Grocery One box of Orzo Coffee $4.99 Cups Paper Plates 1 can of Tomato Sauce - small can One bottle of Balsamic vinegar Cereal –General Mills 1.99

What's for dinner - W/O April 24,2016

Dinners This week April 24, 2016


Chicken Kababs – Greek Salad and Orzo


Fusilli with Ricotta Cheese- salad and Italian bread


Chicken Cutlets-Salad- Green Beans - French-fries


Eggplant parm – salad and rolls to make sandwiches


Peppers and Egg Frittata – Rolls and Salad

Friday – Tuna Salad – fries- salad - (green)

Saturday – Fun night – could be take out, homemade pizza, Mexican (homemade) Deli-Meat quesadillas, grilled cheese and soup – or Diner style cheeseburgers. Until next week’s flyer

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