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Missives from Miss Molly: A Far-Flung Cook Lands


torture, from the thisismolly Flickr photostream

Though I'm dog tired and up to my eyeballs in a big recipe project, I thought ya'll might enjoy the entertaining missives graciously offered up by Molly, a young American cook of my acquaintance who is presently working in a vegetarian kitchen at Montali in the Umbrian region of Italy.

Don't miss her pics at Flickr... full-on kitchen access and food porn.

Today: meet the cast of characters.

ahhh... my first week of work finished. I started off a little slow and disoriented, but finished feeling really well.

About the kitchen:
Pretty small. Smaller than my last job, but completely set up different. As soon as I figure out how to use my laptop at one of the three public computers in this town, I will post more photos. Hopefully that will be today.

The people:
The chef is great. Her name is MaLu (short for Maria Lucia blah blah blah blah blah- she seriously has like 7 names, I think.). She is originally from Brazil, but has lived in Italy for, I don't know, 30 years? She is 50, but does not look a day over 35 and is tall and slender and beautiful and a genuinely warm and caring person. And she is a great chef to boot.

Josh is an FCI (ed: French Culinary Institute) alum who graduated in December. He lives in Bed-Stuy (Brooklyn) and will be here for the entire season, which is 7 months. He's also a really nice guy and the only other American here.

Roman is from Mexico... I forget the town but somewhere near the Texas border. He is going to go to culinary school in Perugia (the capitol of Umbria) in October.

Eva is from Slovakia and she is kinda like a server/dishwasher/maid. She speaks pretty decent English and pretty decent Italian. She's pretty quiet and mostly converses with:

Yaro. He's from Slovakia as well and is really funny. He's a dancer and has one of those kinda crackly voices.

Binario works only in the morning and I think just does laundry and cleans the rooms. She is from Sardinia and if I spoke Italian, I guess I would hear her thick Sardinian accent. She doesn't speak a word of English.

Esta is from Nigeria. She speaks English pretty well and I think she does the same thing as Binario. She is a cutie pie and a half and wears this Adidas-kinda jacket with the word "freaker" written in old English across the back. I'm not too sure what a freaker is, nor am I sure if Esta does either. But it's there!

And last but not least
Alberto. MaLu's husband. He speaks fluent (British) English and is pretty patronizing. He constantly talks about how great Montali is and his wife is and how we are so privileged to be here and BMW won't stop sending him things and how the food is so molecular and cutting edge (ahheemmbullshitcoughcough). I'm not trying to put the guy down, he's nice.


Check back! Tomorrow we'll learn more about the cooking, the eating and the drinking...

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6.19.2006

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