Saturday, August 27, 2016

Italian Style Sloppy Joe's - Another Manly Dinner

The men in my life (aka: my husband and adult son) are so easy to please, when it comes to what I cook for them. They lovingly express their appreciation for my culinary achievements with more "sophisticated" fare, such as "Osso Bucco" or classic "Beef Bourguignon with homemade egg noodles".

Yet, one of their favorite recipes that I still make for them is "Sloppy Joe's".   It's certainly not fancy, but it's comfort food that never fails to please them. There's something about ground beef, tomato paste, tomato sauce, bell pepper, onion-- and a few other goodies-- served atop a hamburger bun that they sink their teeth into with gusto.  While my son no longer lives here, officially, he is a frequent guest for meals-- and I'm absolutely fine with that. 

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Saturday, August 20, 2016

Bavarian Zwetschgendatschi – German Plum Sheet Cake (Tart) Recipe

That's a mouthful of a recipe name, isn't it? "TCH-VENCHKEN-DATCHI" is as close as I can get to teaching non-Bavarians how to say that word. German Plum tart is probably a lot easier to remember.

My Bavarian Mutti made this dessert for as long as I can remember.  This dessert is as traditional to Bavarians as apple pie is to Americans.  To keep things authentic, I wait until August-- when I call my local produce store and ask "do you have Italian prunes in stock"?  I hold my breath-- and I feel a sense of joy when the answer is "yes".  

Italian plum/prunes have a very short season-- pretty much between August and September.  Last year, I waited too long, and there were none to be found.   

This year, I got really lucky!  Craig and I drove 90 minutes to Los Altos Hills to visit my Bavarian cousin.  Her Italian plum tree was full of ripe fruit-- ready for the picking!  (The pink ribbons is an effort to keep her  neighborhood squirrels from stealing her fruit.)

She generously filled a big bag full of those precious fall fruits, so I could go home and make my own Zwetschgendatschi.

These two "cousins" (left and right of me) are 100% authentic Bavarians and haven't lost their spunk being 95 and 80, respectively! They are very active ladies, with a hilarious zest for life.

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