I’m here again, after a weekend spent at my grandma’s home in Molise – one of the least renown regions of Italy, not for a supposed unworthiness, but for the shy and reserved nature of its inhabitants; in fact, it’s a really beautiful region, full of wonderful spots and – of course! – good food!
Maybe some of you may remember that I spent some thime there weeks ago, when the weather was still summer-like and a bounty of apples and pears graced the land… But, in this period of the year, I knew that I was supposed to find red and golden foliage, crisp mornings and shy foxes passing by…! So of course, as the metropolitan person as I am, I was very eager to enjoy all these wonders that are so lacking in a city!
I don’t know what you think about this point, but Autumn is one one my favourite seasons ( after summer maybe… ): cool and crisp, with its gorgeous trees ( one of my favourite topics in fact ) and wide lands to roam about, camera in hand and eyes wide open, catching all the things that I miss when in town… ( Not that I complain for the warmer weather and the conviniences of a city! ), but all these are the things I miss the most during the rest of the year. And so, when my mother proposed for us to spend a couple of days at my grandma’s home, I agreed eagerly, anticipating all these things deep inside me.
Well, what can I say… when we arrived, I had another proof of the crazy weather of these last years: there was… an odd mix of late summer and autumn in the air; warm, beautiful days as in the Summer, but clear and golden as in the Autumn; the apple tree from which I picked the fruits for my bundts a month ago or so, was bare as in Winter; but, at the ends of the branches, there were new leaves already bloomed! And buds as full as in January! There were trees still lush with green foliage, and others already turned to the beautiful colours of Autumn; berries and fruits on the bushes and chirping birdie as on a Summer dawn… A very odd experience.
However, we enjoyed it nonetheless; the natural beauty of it all, and the food! let me say that, if you’ve never tasted a Carovilli’s ricotta, you’ve never tasted ricotta! This, apart from the poetic beauty of the land, is one of the things I look forward to the most when visiting: creamy, soft ricotta, dense and thick… not a single lump, but so smooth and delicate. And the charcuterie, hard homemade cheeses, the smell of truffles, another highlight of the land… If ever you plan to visit Italy, can I suggest you this region? And encourage you to look for the farms and trattorias so abundant there? It’s something you will not regret, I promise!
In fact, it always comes to my mind when visiting, that there was an old lady who kept a beautiful little farm on an isolated spot in the mountains down there; whit the help of her son, she kept the cows and sheeps to roam freely in the lands around, and prepared ( handmade of course ) a small but delicious bounty of delicious cheeses and ricottas, something that puts the bar too high. My father, as the businessman as he is, suggested to the lady to open an internet trade for all her delicious products, to expand her business ( and her improvements of course ); after brief consideration, the woman answered that she preferred to keep her business small, to guarantee the homemade quality of it all. Doesn’t that sound wondrous?
Well, back to my jouney… despite the crazy weather, I had it all: cool morning to roam about still in my pajama, camera on hand, to take home with me all these images that I knew I would miss when in town again… I hope my photos here can give you a moment of breath from wherever you are now, and transport you in that small valley in which I spent my weekend… no fruit gathered this time, and no recipe, but lots of images and memories.