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For the second year in a row, I am missing my kitchen in Puglia due to the plague and pestilence of this global pandemic. Hopefully we will see each other again next year. You can see why I miss it by checking out the IMK post I wrote the last time I was there In my Kitchen in Puglia.

Since I had to stay home again this summer, I invited friends over in my backyard a few times. I would usually make pizza for this type of gathering, but my 23 year old oven had been unpredictable and slowly dying. One time my crust would be nice and crispy, another time barely cooked. For a change, I was very Pugliese and made panzerotti. They were delicious, but messy to fry.  Next time I will do it outside on my portable induction burner, but this wasn’t possible by myself. Making panzerotti is really a 2 person thing. They need to be fried soon after being formed, or else they continue to rise, and the tomato sauce starts to seep through the dough. Both of these things can cause them to open and then the oil splatters and gets very messy. I did finally get a new stove last month. Isn’t it beautiful? Now my appliances are the same colour and my pizza crust is evenly cooked.  Yeah!

The pomodori in my garden have been happy. I grew all the plants from seeds, harvested from last year’s crop. Mamma and I have already dried seeds for next year.

My pomodori come in all shapes and sizes.  They have been eaten every day, in every possible way. The cherry ones taste like candy. I walk outside and eat them straight off the vine.

Speaking of pomodori, a few weeks ago, my parents’ cantina had only 3 litres of pasta left on the shelf! That has never happened before. Luckily, my family got together for our 2 day ‘salsapalooza’ and made 273 litres of passata di pomodoro. The cantina is restocked, as you can see!  The whole process can be found in the post Passata di Pomodoro. Most of the tomatoes were purchased, since the ones in our gardens are not all ripe at the same time. We are usually making our passata while jet lagged, right after getting back from Italia, so we supposedly had extra energy this year-although it didn’t feel like it!

Once the pomodori were canned, the rest of the basilico was used for making Pesto Genovese. Now I need to make some Corzetti to serve the pesto with.  I can pour myself a glass of white wine and pretend I am in the Cinque Terre.

My good friends from Sooke came to visit and I made a cake for Susanne’s birthday. Using my most popular recipe, I made Torta Caprese all’ Arancia. The margherite (daisies) design were made with almonds.  I sprinkled the entire cake with icing sugar, then removed the almonds. Ta-da!

The fig crop this year was unbelievable. My family ate all the figs we could, but there were way too many to eat #italianproblems. We made fig jam and even extra fig crostata to freeze. Next year I will have to try drying some too.

That is about all from my cucina (and my parents’ garage) for now.  What is happening in your cucina?  Let me know in the comments.  This post is part of the monthly ‘In my Kitchen’ linkup hosted by Sherry.  To read the other posts in this linkup, click this link to her blog Sherry’s Pickings.

Ciao, Cristina