As I mentioned last time, between a week doing little and a week trying to do something we went for Sunday lunch at Maja’s, where Alessio and I were cooking.
Alessio and I arrived at Maja’s apartment, a little bit later than she would have liked, on Sunday morning. Once Ana arrived we went up to the apartment above, that Maja had got permission from her landlady to use, which was great because it was bigger and had a fancy oven and ceramic hobs, if a little bit cold, in temperature and decor.
We started cooking, Alessio was doing the first dish, and I the second, but by the time I went to get Monika it was getting far too late for Maja, who decided to eat a small sandwich to keep her going (big mistake). When we returned, Alessio was putting the final touches to his bucatini all’amatriciana, which was probably enough for a whole meal (even after throwing bucatini all over the side).
For the second dish I opted for traditional roast beef with roast potatoes and carrots – it was Sunday lunch after all. It was interesting when buying the meat, the butcher looked at me as though I were an alien when I said I would do it ‘al forno’. As incomprehensible to me is the Balkan taste for well done meat, though I wasn’t complaining as it meant that Alessio and I got to enjoy the lovely pink middle of the beef.
Completely stuffed, we relaxed by playing a few games. The first, Dixit, is a great game (not just because I won) about storytelling and imagination, the second was not so good, so simply any child could win – a game of speed and aggression… it is actually fun, but Maja won.
When I thought it was time to leave the girls suggested they might want pudding, I didn’t need (or want) to eat any more, but said that I would eat a little if it was made.
Pudding isn’t used in the English sense, but refers to blancmange-style desserts, bought in packets to which you add milk. At least I thought it was just milk, but you also add about 4 tablespoons of sugar per pack (and we used 4 packets between 5 of us, a chocolate and vanilla mix). I regretted agree to this.
We layered the pudding in large bowls, adding necessary chocolate chunks between layers – don’t worry, desiccated coconut was sprinkled on top, which cancelled out all the sugar.
Luckily we had 30 minutes to wait whilst they chilled and set, which was spent trying to clean burnt milk from the pristine ceramic hobs without scratching them, though high intensity exercise may have been better. When it came to eating, nobody could finish one, in fact Maja didn’t eat any because a couple of spoonfuls whilst making it were enough – despite it being her suggestion.
After a great day spent with friends (and so much food), we rolled home a few kilos heavier.