A very dear friend of mine turned 31 today. We've known each other for a long time now -- through college, cross-country moves, and 12 years of shared and solo adventures. For fun, let's call this friend... my Pal :)
Pal beat me to the punch when it came to Italian travels, living and eating abroad. During our junior year at Brown, Pal left sleepy Rhode Island to study abroad in Bologna. I was fortunate to be able to visit her there and witness a remarkable thing happen in Pal's life - for the first time, she started to really enjoy cooking!
Now we get to add one more shared hobby, cooking together, to our repertoire. To celebrate her birthday this year, I asked Pal what she wanted for dinner. Being the pasta aficionado that she is, she hardly hesitated when she chose trofie genovese - a pasta from Genova (a city on the Northwest coast of Italy) that is traditionally served with pesto, boiled potatoes, and green beans.
We made these trofie together - Happy Birthday, friend!