Saturday, July 3, 2010

I am back with news!

Dear readers, I know it has been a long time, and I don't even know if there is anyone out there. I am back after a long hiatus to let you know that this is my last post here. The suitcase is closing for good -the virtual one- and I am focusing on my other blog. This blog focuses on my art -the work, the process, the inspiration.

I have also opened an Etsy store with some of my work, and I hope you can stop by. Let me know what you think of it, any suggestions to improve are always welcome.

This blog was a constant companion to our falling in love with Italy. I have enjoyed every minute of it. Thanks to all that came along on this journey, I hope to hear from you at my other place.

Ciao, ciao

Monday, March 15, 2010

Mondo Beyondo

Ideas pile up in my head like leaves cornered by the wind. Proyects come and go, some see the light of day, and some stay buried in my mind. I know what I want, yet I still have to find the way to get there.

I read this the other day and it moved something inside me: "It is never too late to be what you might have been." It was the beginning of a renewal, a blank page to fill with all the colors of my dreams.

I have joined Mondo Beyondo to help me with the first steps. I am happily embracing what I am.

My new website, and all the ideas I wrote about back in January are coming along. I will be ready to bring them to life soon.

All my love to all of you, my listeners, my friends.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Don't despair...

Please, please be patient. The new year is bringing changes and a new perspective on things. I'm working hard to try and get a new project going. I think it will be worth waiting for...

In the meantime you can always stop by my other blog and take a look at what I see.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

#19 Sketch daily

Have I done it? No. Not really. Not as much as I wanted.

Do I keep on trying? Yes. Often. It is frustrating, but inspiring at the same time.

I did not tease you here to look at a half accomplished item. I am not THAT self centered... Instead I have something new that I am trying, something that I am liking a lot, something that reminds me daily of the beauty of the world around us.

365 Days in Color. This is my daily dose of happiness. This is another way of sketching. I really, really, really like this project.

I am keeping a record. You can sneak a peek if you want.

Don't ever forget to keep your eyes open, and your camera ready.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

#7, #30 and # 41

I am finally feeling one hundred percent myself and I have some free time to post on my neglected blog!

I am happy to report that the list is a never-ending source of smiles, and that, of course, makes me really happy! November has been so far a very productive month for the list as we celebrated Fernando's birthday on the 8th, and I got inspired by a couple items on it.

We planned and schemed, we wanted to surprise our dear Fernando with something pretty special. What to do? Where to take him? What to cook? Circumstances decided for us on several fronts, as he arrived at 8:00 AM local time, after a 24 hour LONG trip from the States. We were not going anywhere, we were going to take it easy and just enjoy each other's company. I decided to cook a Spanish inspired meal: a great Paella (overflowing with seafood) and Galician Octopus (#41), with some wine and a crème caramel for dessert. Not bad, I tell you, not bad. The Octopus is easy to cook, as long as you buy it fresh and clean from the seafood vendor you don't have to worry about a thing. Just boil, boil, boil (2 hours) and then, cut, cut, cut into little pieces. Cool, season, and let sit for a while... delicious!

When it came down to what to give him for his birthday, we wanted something original and unexpected. You know, something that he doesn't need, something that he has not even imagined... Well, the idea came to me on one of those beautiful clear days of fall while watching glider planes lazily travel the wide blue sky. A ride on a glider plane! The Alps and the lakes from a birds-eye point of view! We had our gift! He was surprised, yes he was! #7 accomplished!

#30 is half done... my half, that is. I love dancing; it is in my blood. My boys? Not so much. I guess I am the true Colombian of the three. On Fernando's birthday I managed to get them to join in the fun, if only for a while. I think this one is going on the list again, I am not giving up on them and the fun that is dancing together.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

I want my mom.

I am sick. I want to get in bed and sleep until everything is better. I will be back when everything is better.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

#12 Make gnocchi from scratch

It is almost November and the list is alive and well... I think I have crossed out half of the items on it, and another 5 are being planned and executed sometime soon!

As I said before many of these things I want to do, others are dreams I like to fulfill. Some of them were easy to do, others are not going to be done. Many exciting things that are not on the list have sneaked into my life. All in all, I am happy with the way things are.

Of course, I would like to be true to myself and find the time to make the things on the list that count the most, of course these are the most difficult to do. Step by step I am getting there. (I know I am rambling, and I know I must have lost many of you, but I also know that sometimes I need to talk to myself, even if by blogging)

So, if you found this post by googling Gnocchi recipe, and you have not left in frustration yet, your patience will pay. This is by far my favorite Italian recipe, easy, tasty and versatile.

Ennia, my sweet Italian cooking teacher taught me how to make these beauties. I hope to be able to put into words her ability and talent.

1 kilo red potatoes (these Italian potatoes remain dry and sturdy after cooking)
400 grams hard wheat flour or farina di grano duro
Salt to taste

Cover potatoes with water, add salt and boil until tender.
Peel potatoes when cool enough to handle, then extrude them with a potato ricer.

Add some flour to a working surface and knead the potato with flour and salt until you get a soft dough that is easy to shape and handle. Roll it so it is as thick as your arm.

Cut wide slices, then cut these slices in four or five pieces. Roll them into thin rolls, as thick as your index finger.

Roll the pieces with additional flour, and then cut into small pieces (as wide as they are thick).

Gnocchi could be boiled at this point, but Ennia is from the Venetto region of Italy and she works her magic with a fork to give the gnocchi their particular shape (it holds more sauce this way, you see?)

To shape the gnocchi like this, you will need to press the small piece of dough lightly into the fork, your finger leaves an indentation on one side, the fork leaves its own indentation on the other side. Beautiful, aren't they?

Add some more flour to prevent them from sticking to each other.

Bring salted water to a boil and drop the gnocchi gently into it. Raise the heat so the gnocchi raises to the top. Once the gnocchi floats, it is ready, so take it out with a slotted spoon and serve onto plates accompanied with your favorite sauce.