Marzo 'e Pazzo: A recipe for Broccoli Rabe

In Italy, we often say, “Marzo è pazzo….March is crazy.” My adopted hometown of Agerola is particularly neurotic the entire month of March.  Gale force winds blow up from costal Amalfi to create cyclones of plastic recyclables, vineyard trellises, garden vegetables… It rains for days. Then a glimpse of sublime sun might peak above our mountains only to fade again and leave us to our seasonal depression.

Last week we had especially operatic weather.  With fierce winds tearing through Agerola, Giuseppe’s mother woke up uncharacteristically early one morning, stalked into the kitchen and shouted, “Where are my sausages?” I struggled for a moment to grasp why she woke at 7am (her usual wake-up time is roughly noon) to determine the location of a missing, but apparently treasured pork product. 

Tuscany always gets the romantic treatment. Americans love Tuscan sun, wine, hills, olive oil….  Tuscany is a magic word in America and especially at silly restaurants where the word ‘Tuscan’ is used to sex up uninspired menu options in a pinch.

I often have to remind myself that Tuscany is a special word in my native lands.  Not because I don’t find Tuscany beautiful, (it is beautiful) but because Tuscany is usually the site of epic road trip meltdowns for Giuseppe and me.  Generally by the time we reach Tuscany, we have been in the car for eight hours and we start realizing Tuscany is big, like really big.