Lessons in Italian food

Words with Lou…

Lou – What’s for dinner?
Me – Spaghetti Carbonara
Lou – Aw mannn….
Me – What’s wrong??
Lou – That’s the stuff with the peppers and shit? I don’t like that.
Me – No, that’s caccitore.
Lou – Oh. …well what’s carbonara?
Me – I’m not telling you just so you can hate on that too.

It’s like living with a five year old when it comes to food with him. I am thankful that he’s always willing to try new things, but it boggles my mind that he doesn’t like classic dishes like fettucine alfredo and eggplant parmesan.

The carbonara turned out alright. I was just following some 15-minute meal recipe. It wasn’t exactly authentic, in that I used the rest of a bag of bacon bits instead of frying up real bacon because it’s all I had. Ok, don’t judge, it says REAL bacon on the package. I also added some peas. Because peas are freakin delicious. I may have added too much garlic though. Lou said his whole head felt like garlic, or something along those lines. I just played it off like that was supposed to happen. “Oh, the ol’ garlic head? Yeah…umm, that’ll happen”.

Here’s the recipe for those curious: Spaghetti Carbonara

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Italian Food FTW

Recently, a few of us went out to eat at a new Italian restaurant that just opened up in Pitman, NJ – Mannino’s. Our friend is the head manager extraordinaire ring leader? I’m not sure what his title is, but he’s been working his butt off to get everything up and running perfectly. Being Italian, I was really excited to try it since this is my FAVORITE type of food ever in the whole wide world and I feel like we never get it very often!

The restaurant is a byob, and we really came prepared. Probably a little TOO prepared. They were really nice about chilling the beer in the back for us and bringing out some wine holder thingy to chill that too. Also, how cute is that red wine in the front called The Scribbler?? I don’t know if you can tell, but the label is meant to look like a piece of paper ripped from a notebook and scribbled on. I’m a sucker for creative packaging.

We ordered some kind of spicy mussels & clams appetizer, along with calamari, and some freaking delicious sausage and broccoli rabe thing.
My meal had scallops and shrimp in this rich brandy rose cream sauce over linguine. I’m drooling just thinking about it. Lou got a pizza, because he’s Lou. But it was really good too! Very garlicky.

Not like we had any room left in our stomachs, but we all ordered cannolis and espresso for dessert. Unfortunately, now I can’t stop obsessing over buying an espresso machine. It was just so wonderful tasting and a great end to the meal. The owner came by a couple of times to see how we were doing. It was really nice to be in a restaurant where you feel like they care about you being there. If we lived a little closer, I could see coming here very often.
I hope this place does well. It seems to be off to a good start and I’m looking forward to stuffing my face with more delicious Italian noms.