Mimi's Shopping List

8 tomatoes on the vine
1 pt yellow grape tomates
1 bunches basil
4 large red peppers
1 head garlic
12 lemons
2 limes ( for sparkling  water)
1 navel orange
green sicilian olives
medium black olives
1 head celery

8 chicken legs
8 chicken thighs
6 chicken breasts
3 links of Finocchiona (about 1 1/2 lbs)

1 lb parmigiano reggiano
1 lb fresh mozzarella (salted)
1 lb provolone
16 oz heavy cream
1 dozen eggs

16 oz balsamic vinegar
32 oz extra virgin olive oil
granulated sugar
1 jar marinated artichoke hearts
2 boxes thin bread sticks
2 loaves foccacia
1 loaf italian bread
2 boxes mezze penne rigate

3 bottles water with bubbles
2 bottles prosecco
4 bottles red wine
4 bottles white wine
2 six packs beer


  • STOP!  I am always going to remind you to check your pantry against your shopping list before you leave for the grocery store so you don't buy something you already have.
  • Make your life easy:  complete your shoppping at least one day before preparing a dish.
  • Organize your shopping list.  Add up the total amount of a single ingredient you will need for all dishes. List items to correspond with the layout of your supermarket.
  • We love tomatoes on the vine, especially if you are making a caprese salad.  If your tomatoes have no flavor, your salad has no flavor!  Smell the tomatoes when you are buying them.  Yes, you will look crazy but, if they don't smell the way a tomato should smell, keep looking.  We bought the yellow grape tomatoes to give the salad a litte additional color.
  • Buy the largest red peppers you can find.
  • Don't buy lemons, limes or oranges that are as hard as a rock.  They should give a little when you squeeze them.
  • We did not buy kalamata or oil cured olives.  They were simply black marinated olives.
  • If you can have them cut the parmigiano reggiano and the provolone fresh from a wheel, do it.
  • Only use fresh mozzarella with salt.  The unsalted lacks flavor which you really need in a caprese salad.
  • We always use cage free, organic eggs.
  • Don't break the bank on balsamic vinegar.  We bought ShopRite brand and it was delicious.  Spend your money on good extra virgin olive oil.
  • We like Barilla pasta.

...and other Thoughts
The celebration is May 18th, we'll be in beautiful Buck Hill Falls in the mountains of northeastern Pennsylvania.  Who knows what will happen with the weather?  I sure hope it doesn't rain.  But, even if it does, we'll celebrate!! The leaves are on the trees, lilacs are blooming, the golf course looks lush and ready for play. Every year I am newly astonished by the beauty that surrounds us in our community.  It is the perfect location for a perfect celebration!

Thoughts on Wine (and beer)

Prosecco:  I am a huge fan of prosecco, especially Mionetta.  Although very good, I probably wouldn't buy Mionetta Prosecco Organic D.O.C.  I found it to be on the sweet side and I prefer the brut.

Red:  The Sella & Mosca Tanca Farma 2006 has a big bold spicy flavor that perfectly complemented the balsamic roasted chicken.  For those who don't enjoy such a bold wine, the Ricasoli Brolio Chianti Classico is a very pleasant wine with fruit and a slight peppery sensation.  It also stood up well to the balsamic chicken.

White:  I must say I was reluctant to serve a white wine with this menu because I was convinced the chicken would overpower a white.  I was wrong.  The Monti Guidi Del Carmine Pecorino while light and crisp was fruit forward with a slight hint of balsamic.  As a result it perfectly complemented the meal. 

The beers were pale lagers.  We bought them simply to keep with the Italian theme of the evening.  We don't know the first thing about beer.  Drink what you like.

Everyday Divas Celebrations
with Mimi and Sue
Warm Weather Welcome