Via Gaetano Sacchi, January 24—
MIDDAY DINNER in the Ghetto today, there to have the famous carciofo alla giudia, artichoke Jewish style: blanched, I'm sure; marinated in lemonjuice water, then fried, flattened under a weight — these days, probably cooked in a two-plate griddle. The inside is creamy and tender, the tips of the leaves delightfully crisp.
Afterward I was content with a baccalà — salt cod — with pine nuts and pistachios, a little Jewish, I thought, a little Sicilian. Afterward, a ricotta cheesecake with dried cherries. I liked the lunch well enough, but it's interesting that while this place get considerable notice in English-language outlets (New York Times; TripAdvisor) it doesn't seem to show up in the Italian sites I look at (Gambero Rosso, Osterie d'Italia). What's up with that?
white and red della casa
•Nonna Betta, Via del Portico D'Ottavia, 16, Rome; 349 667 1620
THEN, SUPPER THIS EVENING at home: another pot of home-made minestrone; bread and cheese. I'd bought a good-sized chunk of one of my very favorite cheeses, Castelmagno — a grainy white cow's-milk cheese from Piemonte with a very slight blue veining. I've only seen it in Italy; even there it's not easy to find. I can hardly wait to have a pasta dressed with it one of these days…