It was a pretty good weekend in and around Rome. Friday night 18 of us took part in a special one-time cooking class with a guy Rob, who teaches some semesters for the COD Rome Program, and his companion Sabrina. A food connoisseur and self-described prostitute [not really] and pseudo intellectual, Rob showed us how to make a full course Italian dinner and talked about the importance of food in Italian culture. It was held at Palazzo Cenci, the floor above our studio space in an apartment of one of our professors. With an extremely small kitchen it was a pretty impressive undertaking. I think usually they try to be more hands on but there simply was not enough room. On the bright site we got a fantastic full course dinner for 35 euro and got to see it all being prepared.
The dinner started out with antipasta with an onion omelet, followed by a small salad topped with a small slice of a complex loaf-like combination of potato and goat cheese (don’t recall the actual name). The pasta was spinach ricotta ravioli made from scratch, followed by fried potatoes and chicken with a pear sauce. For a dessert was a creamy pudding dish with cocoa powder and a lemon liquor. All in all it took a little over five hours. Interesting to see, and some great food.
Saturday two others and I went to Tivoli, a small city not far from Rome. To get there we took the Metro line B from Termini and caught a suburban bus line from a further out station. In Tivoli we visited Villa d’Este, a 16th century Renaissance villa built on the steep terrain. It was a gorgeous day to walk around the gardens and see some countryside. After the villa we walked around the city center a little bit before catching the bus back to Rome. (Photos here.)
Sunday I went with two other friends to Ostia Antica, an enormous archeological site of the harbor city for ancient Rome. Originally at the mouth of the Tiber River, it is now a few kilometers from the sea due because of sediment build up over the centuries and change in sea level. It was fun to walk through the well preserved remains and see various mosaics and frescoes. The weather was not quite as nice this day and was quite windy. Overall a pretty active weekend.