DIAVAL, STRIA, PANGIALD E OSS DI MORT – DEVIL, WITCH, YELLOW BREAD AND DEAD’S BONES COOKIES

DIAVAL, STRIA, PANGIALD E OSS DI MORT – DEVIL, WITCH, YELLOW BREAD AND DEAD’S BONES COOKIES

These are days of heavy thoughts and perhaps for this reason even more I feel an instinctive call towards traditions, as if I could find a kind of refuge.

So I re-launch the invitation to share ideas or recipes that refer to Halloween rather than Samhain.

After having definitely appreciated the pumpkin pie, I wanted to try to recover the recipes of Lomellina.

But apparently we are more predisposed to the oral tradition without then bothering to transfer in writing …

In fact, it is a feat to find sources other than the same phrase bounced more or less at random without confirmation.

Annalisa Alberici wrote very well about this in the book Cucina del Pavese della Lomellina and Oltrepo

on page 13 there is an important question:
Does Pavese cuisine exist?

The answer is long and complex, but in short:
I must admit: over the centuries the cuisine of Pavia was never written. Or it was by chance.

Apparently Pavia cuisine is just like the beautiful silence… and as soon as I read this sentence I could not help but smile, thinking back to the memory of the sentence my grandmother used to repeat to me

In reality, however, I also found another book that talks about Milan with reference to the Visconti‘s period, which therefore it can be considered extended to Vigevano

and it also mentions Pavia:

At the table, the sadness of the day of the dead, with its traditional visits to the cemetery, yields to the traditional dishes that require the biella (pot) with supa coi sisar (chickpea soup) enriched with pork rinds, and pangiald or bread of the dead. Now pangiald can be bought in bakeries or pastry shops, but it was once baked in the home oven.

It is true that my family is contaminated, but we have never eaten chickpeas… so the pangiald remains right.

All Saints’ Day, bread … this phrase comes to mind:
The two best and holiest smells are those of warm bread and rain-soaked earth.
Ardengo Soffici

Here it rains less and less, but the earth is still wet: by fog.

So, rather than for the kitchen, it is on the scary side that Lomellina has nothing to envy, our atmospheres lend themselves a lot!

In fact, unlike the recipes, there is no shortage of legends.

Al diaval: the devil, for example, would have unleashed all his fury on the church of Santa Maria in Lomello to prevent the second marriage between Queen Teodolinda, a Catholic, and Agilulfo instead of Arian.

Among the various versions handed down, the official website of the municipality has published the most suggestive.

About the stria: witch, as you can imagine, there are many stories and it seems there are also direct testimonies … but you know, this part is the “soul” of these stories … forgive the pun.

Among all I would opt for the one that gave the name to The Branch of the Witches which is actually a wonderful branch of the Ticino river

 

It is said that The Branch of the Witches was named after the misfortune of a woman suffering from strange symptoms who on a full moon night, in order to purify herself in the waters with the help of her friends, finds herself having to face the devil and ends up transformed into a giant seaweed that drags all the other women to the bottom as well.

And the algae, which are the characteristic of that stretch of river, are said to resemble the hair of witches.

Here is the picture I prefer.

And you tell me a story?

In return, I do not limit myself to pangiald: I could not fail to present the classic “treat” as well.

These are the most similar to the oss di mort (Dead’s Bones) version that I remember eating: rather large, oval in shape, and vaguely similar to the panforte.

But if we abounded with chocolate for the Keep Calm variant, would it be serious?

C’ERO ANCH’IO SU QUEL TRENO – THERE WAS ME ON THAT TRAIN TOO

C’ERO ANCH’IO SU QUEL TRENO – THERE WAS ME ON THAT TRAIN TOO

In thanking Giovanni Rinaldi once again, I am happy to tell you about his new book There was me on that train too  The true story of the children who united Italy published by Solferino.

There was me on that train too is published exactly twelve years after Happiness trains, years during which Giovanni Rinaldi never interrupted his historical research which, with his tireless human commitment, has turned into a real mission to bring together the protagonists of a chain of wonderful solidarity.

In the post-war years, thousands of children were hosted by generous families who pledged to offer them what they had been deprived of for various reasons, welcoming them and treating them as their own children.

Giovanni Rinaldi’s essay starts from the tragic consequences of a strike in San Severo in 1950 following which more than a hundred people were arrested: mothers, fathers, leaving many children in the middle of a street.

A song recorded by Giovanni begins like this

The venditré of March

Succèsse ‘na rruìna …

I know, I have already written it, but for me the dialect, as well as the oral tradition, are an absolute heritage that, if it were not for people like Giovanni, we would lose.

And instead with his persevering efforts, Giovanni continues in the collection of testimonies that extends to children forced to work in Naples, to children who survived the bombing of Cassino, and to many other cases in which conditions of extreme difficulty have made the help to parents providential, since they were unable to support them.

The organization, transfers, communications between families of origin and host families took place at the initiative of the Communist Party but in particular by the UDI: Unione Donne Italiane.

In this regard, with my love for Christmas, I read with particular emotion the part in which Ida tells of her commitment to collect from various shopkeepers, the necessary to make a Tree set up with candies, biscuits and gifts.

The magic, however, breaks to the point where Ida remembers how the secretary, annoyed at this initiative of hers, even scolded her with a slap …

Women.

Women and Mothers who weave their lives in function of the good for the children, managing to put themselves in each other’s shoes, understanding, working, sacrificing.

I particularly want to remember with affection Americo to which I am grateful for the great teaching on maternal love that he has given me.

The letter from Umberto’s mother is also enchanting:

The hearts of us mothers of the tormented Frosinone greet all of you who come to meet us, and we greet this beautiful work organized by our Communist Party.

I hope to receive more news, and if the Lord will provide me before Umberto returns I will come to see you.

Not that words to thank her for what you are doing for my son, but may the Lord give you back all the good you deserve …

She thanks the party and hopes in the Lord and yet I find no contradiction, on the contrary I admire the wonderful coexistence of thoughts that have the heart as a common denominator.

Heart that I found on every page.

Among the chapters of There was me on that train too, dedicated to each of the children he managed to track down, Giovanni Rinaldi tells us how he managed to trace the families who offered generous hospitality, starting from fragments of memories, names often lacking of references, photographs of a very distant time.

A meticulous work but above all a strong sensitivity combined with the noble intent to realize the desire for reunification of these people who life has inevitably led to distance themselves.

I don’t know if you were able to follow the interview on Rai Uno, otherwise you can retrieve it here at approximately 1 hour and 1 minute.

I advise you to see him to realize how Giovanni’s attitude towards the people he met is: while Severino and Diego tell their experience, he observes them with a smile that says more than any word.

And this is the feeling of extreme respect that runs throughout the book. Giovanni himself tells us that “these elderly gentlemen, when they speak, are the children of the time who tell … and it is also a therapy: going back to those moments means bringing out both the traumas and the joys.”

On tiptoe listening first.

And as much as Giovanni acts as a channel that allows memories and stories to flow that are faithfully reported, he also gives us descriptions of the context so precise as to make us feel transported to the same place, enveloped by the suggestion that the scope of enormous loads of emotions encloses.

I conclude by leaving you this beautiful metaphor about Benedict:

opens the door: a beam of light illuminates the darkness. Outside and inside, as on a border, they all remain still, suspended ...

TOHorror

TOHorror

The TOHorror Fantastic Film Fest will take place in Turin from the 19th to 24th of October, are you a lover of the genre?

Obviously I was captured by the logo with the profile of the cat next to the Mole Antonelliana, but the reason why I was interested is I 12 passi – The 12 steps …

I already told you about Black Ink podcasts, advising you to listen to her stories

Now Serena is among the finalists of the contest Il gatto nero – The black cat and I can only say CHAPEAU.

The official page opens with a quote from Edgar Allan Poe and therefore I would say that there is only the classic “nothing to tell about,” but it closes with something less universally known: Donald Barthelme The aim of literature … is the creation of a strange object covered with fur which breaks your heart.”

Donald Barthelme was also called “modern Dadaist” and in fact, here I am trying to focus on that strange hairy object of which he speaks, but hoping to have saved the heart.

But let’s go back to TOHorror, I don’t know if you follow this event but I would say that the occasion is tempting also in view of the period: All Saints or Halloween or Samhain or Nos Galan Gaeaf whatever you want, and I would say that the ideas are certainly interesting.

The TOHorror website tells us that the first edition of the film festival, dated 1999, had none other than Dario Argento as godfather,  but does not mention an event in my opinion epochal that instead I recommend you to see absolutely:

the director Tiziano Sossi explains that the original version is 76 minutes long, and therefore, researching I found this very precious translation of Fucinemute which represents an unmissable document!

Especially after the part of the interview we listened to, I would quote this passage from the interview, which particularly struck me:

I moved when I was 5 years old to Kentucky, in a boring and very small town in south of United Stated and everything that I learned about evil, everything that I know about I have learned in that little town, from people there“.

This in my opinion is true horror! Am I wrong?

Ok, let’s change range:

My parents gave me enormous gifts, my fahter gave me a movie camera but he gave me music, he was a music professor and he gave me the joy of music, I growth around it, listen to it was the soundtrack of my life.”

Wow. What to say? Don’t you get at least two / three thousand questions?

And you? Would you like to tell what the soundtrack of your life is like?

BISARCA CONTEST 2021

BISARCA CONTEST 2021

”Whatever ” you can do or dream you can, begin it.
Boldness has genius, power and magic in it.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Monica dedicated this sentence to me as one of her many encouragement.
Audacity and I are not even distant relatives and you will tell me “yet you had a lot of courage to participate.”

True! In fact, thank you very much Il Perdilibri for giving this opportunity and for accepting me.

I suggest you also read the stories of past editions which are really very interesting.

Regarding the 2021 edition, in addition to Il Perdilibri, I also thank the other participants who supported me, and even endured me, although they are much better: I had the opportunity to broaden the horizons of knowledge but also of reflection, to learn, and especially to read BEAUTIFUL things.

Then, if you like, there is also mySunset” 

One hundred and seventy-fourth day of captivity, I am writing only now, after my damned jailer has repeatedly prevented me.
Yet I had deluded myself into a loosening of retaliation after my last escape attempt, at the moment when I could taste the food today.
I hadn’t eaten like this since the early days, when the coward still allowed me to go out and walk.
At the first spoonful I felt the desire to bite: an unexpected desire to eat that I didn’t let go.
It was extremely satisfying after all this time to be able to decide to do something with a simple impulse.
When you lose your freedom, nothing is taken for granted. Not even the brief sleep I fell into after devouring everything I could.
But now I wonder what induced the coward to let me seize these moments and I fear he intends to strike me.
I am so tired of feeling like a prey, of feeling totally vulnerable, of annihilating my strength by dint of defending myself.
With my fingers I touch the scar, in the braille writing that I invented I decided to read the word alive, I have been doing it since the day I thanked for those points that put my life back together as well as my skin.
But now the challenge has shifted to the psychological level: my body is almost completely atrophied, but my mind is not.
He knows it well and has honed his perfidy.
Every time I tried to escape, he recaptured me and locked me up in a worse condition than the previous one. Exactly like a noose, but leaving me the breath to allow the suffering to manifest itself in all its devastating repertoire.
Today I was winning until he came back: I feel him so much that I can see the bright red of his fire like a November sunset that sets the sky on fire.
I understood: the time of the night has come.
The time has come when that cowardly carcinoma will swallow my light.

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