Lunch at Roscioli, Dessert at Roscioli Bakery
Thelma returned last night from Turkey and Annie from Washington, so my lunch buddies and I convened once again for a plunge into Roman cuisine at its best: Roscioli. We were four so we split an assortment of classic Roman pasta dishes: cacio e pepe, spaghetti alla carbonara and rigatoni all'amatriciana. All three divine.
Before our pasta we started off with one of Roscioli's signature appetìzers: burrata with alici e pomodori. Burrata, a cheese typical of the Puglia region, is made from mozzarella and cream. An outer skin of cow's milk mozzarella is then filled with a mixture of cream and mozzarella. It's served at room temperature, most frequently topped with anchovies, tomatoes or arugula. Roscioli's breads (pizza bianca, whole wheat with nuts and figs) are a perfect accompaniment to burrata and a necessity for the requisite scarpetta (a Roman dialect term for the practice of using a piece of bread to scoop up the remaining sauce on one's plate).
Artichokes are at their seasonal peak so we were compelled to split an artichoke salad: bulb artichokes cooked to tender perfection, served with sautéed carrots and topped with arugula, shaved raw artichokes, toasted pine nuts and a drizzling of extra virgin olive oil.
Roscioli Bakery is just around the corner so we decided to have a quick coffee and head over to the bakery for dessert. We did share one exquisite tiramisù, and the little dessert that comes with your coffee: four cookies served with a dish of molten dark chocolate for dipping. Or for spooning it up on its own!
It's Easter time so several of the mono portion desserts at the bakery were colombe: the traditional dove-shaped cake, similar to panettone. We bought two types: apple and cinnamon, and apple and pistachio. I also couldn't resist buying a pastry pocket filled with fresh ricotta and whole wild cherries.