When is a hamburger NOT a hamburger?

As you know, I’m not on any diet.

And, so, I didn’t have a hamburger for lunch today.  How good is that, you might be saying?

Ah well, it’s not quite what it seems.  It is marked on the menu as a ‘hamburger’ when, in fact, it’s nothing of the sort.

Ruth complains about the bad way that we English-speaking peoples bastardise Italian and that all of Italy laughs at us – well, the same is true of English words used by Italians.

So, if I didn’t have a hamburger, what did I have?

I had a burger made from veal. So, strictly speaking, I suppose, it was a vealburger, since we also have veggieburgers? But, veal is a baby bull. And, therefore, you could say I had a beefburger.

Certainly, what I didn’t have was a hamburger.  No ham was involved.  In fact, no part of a pig, small or large, was involved.

Oh yes, and I had chips :-( but only a few.

And pasta to start – but not a lot.

And no bread …………. but we did eat two baskets of bread last night because it was so lovely.

I am the first to admit that I am really crap at diets.

Oh, and by the way (thanks Pietro) ‘ho fatto una vacanza di totale relax’ which, almost literally translated is ‘I had a holiday of total relax’. Who’s laughing now?

St Valentine’s Night

Last night we went to the Taverna della Lamparo.

We chose it because of all the restaurants we go to fairly regularly, it is the most romantic. The lighting is low, not bright like Italian restaurants tend to be; it is small, perhaps serving 30-odd people; the tables are big, there is plenty of room and the tables are well spaced out.

Also, the food is superb. OK so we only have fish there although they do have a very small selection of meat dishes but I had prawns with leeks to start with, hot, tasty – no, actually divine. I could have had a bigger portion as the main dish! For the main course, I had, as normal, the parcel of branzino (sea bass) with, in the parcel, potatoes, tomatoes, capers and olives. It was truly great, as always. F had his usual of thinly sliced raw tuna with raw fennel to start and then a sesame coated tuna steak, seared, on a bed of some vegetables.

For sweet we both had the apple strudel with a hot chocolate sauce. To drink we had a bottle of white wine (lighea) which is lovely and then to finish a glass of mirto each.

F had bought me a present. It was a beautiful key ring (from his shop). I had got him nothing, the window men having been much more than a couple of hours doing my windows and doors and then me having to wait for the washing machine.

I had bought him some white tulips the day before as these are his favourite flowers but I had nothing to give him. So, as I was paying for the meal, I bought a bottle of the lighea wine (as you cannot buy it in supermarkets or off-licences). It wasn’t as good as getting him a real present but, together with the tulips, I think it was OK.

We walked back. tomorrow I must start my non-diet again!

He went to bed and put the television on and I walked the dogs. I came back and told him I was going to have a glass of milk and then come to bed. 10 minutes later, I came to bed. He was propped up with one of my pillows in addition to his own, television remote control in hand, seemingly watching TV. One arm was round Dino who was lying next to him.

“I’m going to need my pillow back”, I said, laughing.

There was no response. As I got into bed, I realised that he was asleep. I reached over and took the remote control from his hand and switched off the TV. As I turned round, he woke up so I grabbed my pillow and we both settled down for a particularly quiet sleep, the double-glazed windows keeping out more sound, I am sure.

I adore him, you know?