Rob and I are to prepare fresh artichokes bought from the local market. We strip the outer hard leaves, cut them in half, and begin to prepare the stuffing
Rob mixes herbs, olive oil,Parmesan cheese in with the bread crumbs.
Masimilliano is the Chief cook, one of two sons of Marisso and Jianni. Here he says that he never mixes garlic with onion ... But he will throw in whole cloves , unpeeled, later, then fish them out, so that the garlic flavor is always mild. Roi Gal-Or from the UK school of storytelling, our facilitator, is cooking the chicken.
There are 14 of us cooking plus Masimilliano and his brother Matteo, Marissa, and The father Jianni!
Everyone is completely relaxed, with four teams preparing different courses. The brother of Masimilliano is in the background with his father Jianni.
Of course we have a drink (or two) with the meal, there is much sharing and looking over each other's shoulders to see what each of us is doing, somehow the kitchen holds all the extra bodies effortlessly- I think it has much to do with the amazing hotel owners, Marissa, who always has a smile, and husband Jianni and the sons and their families.
We don't feel like guests, we feel part of the family..
The main Course, grilled Aubergine, stuffed artichokes, frittatas, a chicken dish, and other vegetable dishes, followed by tiramisu- all with fresh ingredients. Locals from the village are invited for supper, and neither Rob nor I took photos, because we enjoyed the party so much. Masimilliano, who has been cooking since morning, picks up a guitar, his two friends have a keyboard and and the music begins. Everyone joins in the dancing, and there are some rude Italian songs, sung with gusto. Do these people know how to enjoy life!