Archive for the ‘carmelina’ Category

Calabrian Peas Fresh from the Garden

Remember when I shared Judy Witts Francini’s recipe for Piselli alla Fiorentina from her wonderful cookbook Secrets from My Tuscan Kitchen? I had to use frozen peas for that dish because ours weren’t ready yet . . . but then they got ready. And man do I love fresh peas from the garden.

Peas are even gorgeous as plants, aren’t they? Such pretty flowers!

I know the goats agree, and although I’m sure they’d love to munch on the peas at any stage of growth, they usually just get the pods once we’ve removed the peas.

And they love ’em!

If you’ve been following along at Goat Berries, you know that these photos are from a few weeks ago as we no longer have the goats pictured above. *sigh*

But we still have Pasqualina and Pinta, and they both love the pea pods too (and fava pods if you got ’em) . . . as I also wrote on Goat Berries, we now even get gift bags of pea and fava pods left in front of our door just for the girls!

I don’t have to tell them twice to eat their veggies!

Come back Wednesday for another great fresh pea recipe — this time with pasta!

What’s growing in your garden right now?

In the Life of an Expat…

In the life of an expat, there are inevitably moments when you’ll miss the place you came from.

Certain holidays and big events top the list, but there are also plenty of small, daily life type things that that make you remember your old life, the people who used to be in it every day, or just “home” itself.

From my experience, those memories are often sparked by smell, which is reportedly your strongest, most reliable sense when it comes to memory. Smell something from when you were five years old and bam! You’re there.

The other day I got a package from my mom full of clothes that hadn’t fit back in my suitcase when I visited a few months ago…and they smelled of her laundry detergent, of course.

*Nostalgia alert!*

The ironic part, though, is that I distinctly remember having a similar experience in America a few weeks into my trip as I sniffed my clothes from here, with *my* laundry detergent smell — enter the pang of missing my life in Italy.

Ah, all in the life of an expat.

A constant push and pull and battle of emotions, contentedness peppered with longing, and happiness churned with sadness, the realization that no matter how consistent and pleasant and wonderful you make your new life (even, for example, if I used the same laundry detergent no matter where I go), there will always be something to remind of you of the other place, the other people, the other life.

It’s quite fitting that while this is one of the hardest parts about being an expat, it’s also one of its greatest blessings.

I know I am ridiculously lucky to have (at least) two places to be nostalgic about.

Buon weekend at tutti!

For All Goat News, Subscribe to Goat Berries!

I love writing about my experiences as a goat maaa because I find myself learning something new every day, especially as we’ve gone on this goat pregnancy journey.

From your comments here, I know a lot of you love to read about our goats. On the flip side, I do realize that not everyone cares *nearly* as much about them as I do or understands my obsession, so instead of interspersing goat posts here (not as often as I’d like!), I’ve done up a new site — just for goat news from our pen and elsewhere.

Some of you already know about my new website, Goat Berries, but for the rest of you who care to read about the kids, do head on over because woooh boy, there’s some big goat news around these parts lately.

And be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss a single post! You can also follow @goat_berries on Twitter and become a fan on Facebook.

And in other “new site” news, you can also now find me at, my professional writing website with samples, testimonials, and more; if you know anyone who needs a writer or editor, feel free to direct them to!

Yes, I’ve been *very* busy with CSS lately…and I’m not done yet. If you’re a Bleeding Espresso fan on Facebook, you may have noticed that my logo has changed. Or maybe you’ve noticed the new favicon in your address bar? Hmm….

Have a great week, and as always, thanks for reading!

Goat Zen in the Goat Pen

After compiling my part of the World Nutella Day round up and finishing some work assignments early in the week, I decided to enjoy the sunshine this afternoon and spend some time with my girls (of the caprine persuasion).

I never would have imagined how calming and reassuring just being in the presence of these goats can be. It’s really hard to be worried or stressed about anything when these sweet faces are looking back at you.


Right now I’m reading Goat Song: A Seasonal Life, A Short History of Herding, and the Art of Making Cheese by Brad Kessler (recommended by a reader and native of Calabria, just down the road from me; grazie mille Anthony!).

Kessler describes the connection with nature, history, and yourself that raising goats provides, noting that throughout time, goats have been the subjects of many legends and stories, always “helping humans or leading them to unexpected places.”

“If you follow living beings assiduously in the field, or through the lens of a microscope,” writes Kessler, “they lead you to an understanding of their lives, and all life. They usher you into a kind of Eden.”


Margherita and Carmelina usually don’t care *too* much if I’m in there with them–they often come to say hello and then just go back to eating, unless they’re not hungry, in which case they’ll stay for petties for a few minutes.

But my Pasqualina, who you might remember, I bottlefed, rarely leaves my side when I’m in the pen, even when I’m clearly disturbing her nap time.

There’s just nothing like goat zen in the goat pen.

Attempted Goat Escape Foiled by Quick-Thinking Maaaa

In late-breaking news, we have received word that one Carmelina Fabio took advantage of a weakly latched gate to escape from her pen.

Just moments ago, Goat Maaaa Fabio entered the garden and found a seemingly confused goat just outside the pen staring back her; her paaaartners in crime, Pasqualina and Margherita, remained inside the pen…equally confused, it seemed.

“Maaaaaaaaaaa!” cried Carmelina as she darted in the opposite direction, possibly startled by Goat Maaaa’s canine companions.

But Goat Maaaa didn’t panic. She quickly secured the dogs’ leash to a tree, walked casually toward the pen making faint tsking noises, unlatched the gate, entered, and turned to find Carmelina right behind her.

And another goat escape has been foiled.

Can’t get enough goat? Check out my new favorite website, All Things Goat and follow on Twitter @AllThingsGoat.

And if you’d like to have a virtual goat of your own, download the iPhone/iPod app, iGoat! It’s rather hilaaaarious.

Michelle KaminskyMichelle Kaminsky is an American attorney-turned-freelance writer who lived in her family's ancestral village in Calabria, Italy for 15 years. This blog is now archived. 

Calabria Guidebook

Calabria travel guide by Michelle Fabio



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Fried eggs with red onion and cheese
Calabrian sausage and fava beans
Ricotta Pound Cake