West Village Friday Evening

My sister made Raffetto’s Wild Mushroom Ravioli and Broccoli tonight. Parmesan cheese on top.

After we ate, we took a walk. No gelato tonight.  We already had an Italian ice earlier in the afternoon

I had raspberry Italian ice from Rocco’s Pasticceria

 

 

It was such a lovely evening. Lots of people out to dinner and enjoying the summer night.

Rental bikes

A chocolate purse at LiLac Chocolates


Outside Magnolia Bakery  waiting

Bleecker Street Festival tomorrow 10-6

 




Cucina Vitale Dinner on the South Side

We finally made it for Saturday night dinner on the South Side.  We’d been meaning to go eat at Cucina Vitale ever since Vincie discovered this dining gem in a Post-Gazette article by Dan Gigler in late January.

Cucina Vitale 

White tablecloths, cut red roses in glass vases, excellent service, delicious food cooked to perfection and served expertly.

Our Antipasti started with black and green olives, Roasted red pepper hummus-like spread and garlic infused olive oil in which to dip the crusty bread. Every bite was delicious. A dish of Greens and creamy Beans was shared. There are no words! What other descriptor can I use besides DELICIOUS?

Followed by the soup of the day which was Tomato Bisque with Basil  (Traditional Wedding Soup is always on the menu)

The specials were Chilean Sea Bass and Lump Crabmeat with a Lemon Caper Compound Butter with sides of Broccoli Rabe and Roasted New Potatoes.

And I ordered the  Cheese Ravioli topped with Medallions in Gorgonzola Sauce with a drizzle of Balsamic.

Tempting house made desserts of Cannoli, Lemon Cheesecake, Chocolate Cake, Burnt Almond Torte or Tiramisu were offered but we hadn’t left enough room.There are a few things to know if you plan to go-

Reservations are essential. BYOB if you desire and it’s Cash Only.  


GREENS & BEANS                                                                                                                            Escarole, Northern Beans, Garlic, Shallots, White Wine, & Parmesan


The Chilean Sea Bass with Lump Crabmeat and Lemon Caper Compound Butter

The Tomato Basil Soup with a touch of Parmesan


Chef Frank Vitale learned to cook from his Grandmother, in the photo on the restaurant wall.

Shot from across the street as we got into the car.

 

Look What Steve Bought at Bloomfield Groceria

We were sad when a local neighborhood business on Cedarville Street, Groceria Italiana, closed their doors last summer..

But here’s the good news!

It  has recently reopened as Bloomfield Groceria.  It’s really close to Steve’s work so he picked up this wonderful ravioli and brought it home.

We are thrilled they are in business under new proprietors.

Especially after tonight’s dinner of their delicious Spinach and Cheese Ravioli. I sautéed baby spinach- you can see it peeking out underneath.

And I grated some fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano on top. I asked Steve if he could  to pick up mushroom ravioli for dinner next week.

Here’s an Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article written by Bob Batz, Jr., about the new Bloomfield Groceria  

https://www.post-gazette.com/local/neighborhood/2019/03/25/Bloomfield-Groceria-Italiana-Italian-grocery-store-Cedarville-Little-Italy-opens/stories/201808050006

Fresh Ravioli

iPhone shots at Groceria Italiana this morning. 

I’ll go back another time with my camera and maybe capture two more People at Work for my series. Carol and Adrienne (sp?) These women were working hard to make all of these beautiful ravioli in short order. So many choices of fillings. 

And yes, I bought a dozen of the fresh ravioli, they boxed them for me right there. I poured sauce over them and  baked  (covered  w foil) for 40 minutes. 

A salad on the side and we had a hearty dinner on a day cool enough to fire up the oven. Delicious. 

Drying in the freezer before being boxed 


Watching the two women prepare the ravioli this morning made me think of Chicago John of Bartolini  Kitchens blog and his family stories about how his mother and his dear aunt, Zia, would get up at five to make fresh ravioli for holiday dinners. Click the blue link for his post. 

80 Pounds of Fresh Linguine in a Day

No, not eaten.  Made!

I can tell you that it is delicious. Today I was buying walnuts and Amish butter and fresh eggs to make biscotti.

On Tuesday they make ravioli.  Mushroom, Imported cheese, artichoke, and many other varieties

Here is Carol in the Groceria Italiana (established 1958) in Bloomfield neighborhood of Pittsburgh.

She is of Irish German descent but is married to an Italian, she told me. Very hospitable and didn’t mind my questions at all.

There is a lovely photograph of Gloria who has passed but who made fresh pasta for years and years using these same machines.

One machine is 27 years old.

Thanks for letting me photograph the process with my iPhone.  I will return with my good camera one of these days.

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Another machine rolling the dough into strips.

 

 

 

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Preparing the strips for the machine.

 

Carol making linguini 2

Here the pasta strips are being cut.

 

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Carol can make 80 pounds of fresh linguine in a day!

 

pasta cutterYou can see the different widths on the pasta cutter machine. Gloria’s photo is above the machine. Carol said her spirit is with them still.