In Gothenburg there’s a very cosy and nice Italian restaurant called Toscana. We use to go there rather often, sometimes for dinner and sometimes just for a glass of red wine (they import really tasty wine). The owner, Francesco, is very nice, kind and very Italian :-) He doesn’t speek Swedish, only English and Italian, and he gladly talks with everyone. His adorable baby daughter is often seen at the restaurant, taken cared of by Francesco’s cute mother (who does most of the delicious desserts at Toscana), by Francesco himself at the same time as he pours up some wine at the bar counter or by Francesco’s wife.
As we are frequent guests (unfortunately we havn’t been there for a long time now), we were invited to Francesco’s birthday and a late opening dinner of the restaurant last summer. It was a lovely evening with wonderful food and a mixture of different people. And the Tiramisú made by Francesco’s mother was absolutely amazing! There was a nice intimate atmosphere that evening (as always when we’re there) and we willingly sang the Italian birthday song (tanti auguri a te! tanti auguri a te!).
There’s a weird painting at Toscana, I think that it’s supposed to be a cow and there are horns on the painting. Anyway, we call the painting the Wine God and it’s absolutely compulsory to toast to the Wine Good when we are there. Sometimes when we’re at home or somewhere else drinking wine we try to remember the Wine God and toast to him in the approximate direction. That can be tricky when we’re abroad, but I hope that we toasted to the right direction when we were on the Maldives, or else the Wine God would be really angry :-) Of course dear Francesco doesn’t know about our toasting and crazy ideas, he surely loves his painting and doesn’t have a clue about the Wine God.
When at Toscana, we often order Penne Fattorini which is a pasta with a hot tasty tomato sauce served with fresh ground pepper and a lot of parmesan. To that you get a delicious focaccia that I love to in the sauce. Yummy!
My own Penne Fattorini
Here’s my own recipe for Penne Fattorini, not so good as at Toscana but not so bad either:
500 g crushed tomatoes (from can or box)
1 big onion
2 garlic cloves
a lot of ground pepper
some cayenne pepper
a pinch of sugar
1 stock cube (vegetable)
250 g Penne
Chop the onion and the garlic cloves, and fry in olive oil for a couple of minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients and let it simmer under a lid for 25 minutes. Don’t forget to add a lot of pepper, it should be really hot and nice!
Cook the pasta al dente, and then mix the pasta with the sauce. Serve with a lot of parmesan cheese and more ground pepper.