The 2012 San Gennaro Feast, Little Italy

I was lucky enough to catch the very last night of the Feast of San Gennaro in Little Italy in 2012 this past Sunday!  This world-famous Italian feast, featured in such movies as Mean Streets and The Godfather Part II commerates the patron Saint of Naples (where my maternal family originates) Saint Januarius.

Saint Janaurius was an early Christian who was allegedly martyred by the Romans by being thrown to wild bears in a public amphitheater (the bears refused to eat him)  than burned in a furnace (his body wouldn’t burn), and then finally beheaded (apparently this did the trick).  Today, the feast of San Gennaro celebrates his rather gruesome martyrdom with oodles of fried sausages and zeppoles for two weeks!!  Even Lobster rolls make an appearance  alongside freshly shucked oysters and clams.

My favorite treat in the festival, flame-grilled pork braciole.  Braciole is pounded pork filet, wrapped around a mixture of cheese, bread, and spices and cooked over hot coals.  Served on a roll with peppers and onions.  Yum.

Here is a closeup!

This guy’s folksy shirt made me giggle.

Below is a typical street scene full of food, folks and fun.  Not pictured are the Dominican cigar rollers, I highly recommend gamboling down the street with a freshly rolled stogie.  It really gets you into that Tony Soprano kind of mood.

Fried shrimp and fried calamari smothered in spicy marinara sauce.  SO good.

And of course, one must cap off this Southern Italian bacchanal with an espresso and a cannoli.  Happy 2012 San Gennaro!  Proof!


Mollusks and Monikers in Massachusetts

Ahh, fried scallops and crisp autumn air in New England, there are few better combinations in life.

Especially around Lake Chargoggagoggmanchauggagoggchaubunagungamaugg!

This modest lake is considered the longest place name in the United States, and has been humorously translated to “You fish on your side, I fish on my side, nobody fishes in the middle.”  A more accurate translation is, “Fishing Place at the Boundaries, Neutral Meeting Grounds.”

Right by the aforementioned lake is the Clam Box, a typical Massachusetts clam-frying fast food stop where delicious bi-valved mollusks are deep-fried and dipped in tarter sauce. You can also enjoy the September cool in the outdoor seating.  In addition, they also serve homemade ice cream to top off the salty festivals of food served daily.

Above was the seafood platter with haddock, shrimp, clams, and scallops over French fries.  HUGE.  A joint effort of three adults couldn’t finish this behemoth.  I felt slightly guilty afterwards, but thoroughly full.  Proof.

290 Dresser Hill Rd Charlton, MA 01507

Crab Overdose

Whenever I’m travelling near the Chesapeake Bay, enjoying various renditions of the humble crab is always a favorite past time.

On a recent trip to the mid-Atlantic states I had a chance to visit Medings Seafood in Milford, Delaware. Above is a soft shell crab BLT. Actually super light, crispy and flavorful. The perfect snack before the main course.

Crab cakes smothered in melted cheese on open-faced English muffins. This was unbelievable rich and heavy… and slightly ridiculous. Crab cakes sans-cheese are totally enough to satiate me (or anyone for that matter). Regardless, this is definitely some #Proof!

Surrender to the Dog Pile

Nachos, buffalo wings, and loaded potato skins, I desire you not. Mine eyes have been opened. I am not longer captivated by your salty allures. The only appetizer worthy of ordering is warmed pita wedges smothered in artichoke dip, mozzarella cheese, scallions and tomatos. Oh yes. I’ve surrendered to the Dog Pile.

You can pick up this cheesy, gooey, delicious mess of awesomeness at the Dogfish Head Brewery in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.

It’s such a uniquely simple idea, one that makes your brain scream, “Why didn’t I think of that first???”

And of course, nothing pairs better with a plate of pure hedonism than a frothy maple-syrup blended 75 Minute Dogfish Head IPA. Proof.