Olives and Almonds

sicilian-olives-300x225.jpg Have you eaten at the Tuckers recently?”

“You mean the olives and the almonds?”

“Every fucking time. That’s all you get until dinner.”

Well, it’s true. I don’t like to stuff people before I feed them. I want that feeding-the-pirhanas feeling when I bring the pasta out. Forks flashing. That kind of thing.

I have no interest in serving food to full people.

So, we put out a bowl of olives – usually the “festive mix” or whatever it’s called, from Fairway, or those big, fat Sicilian olives, a bit lighter green in color, meaty and briny.

roasted-almonds-300x224.jpgThen a bowl of almonds, roasted and salted. That’s it. Oh, and a little bowl for the olive pits. And something to drink.

Last night we had some friends over – just the four of us – and I made my spaghetti alle vongole. I know, I’ve already written about that dish at least once before – but good things should be enjoyed often.

This time, being winter, I did it without tomatoes, which were added in August in homage to the pomodorini ripening in our Umbrian garden.

Jill made her green beans in lemon-parmigiano dressing over arugula, which was a perfect complement to the pasta with clams.

And we were all nicely hungry when the food was served. I think it’s the way to go.


Michael Tucker is an actor and author whose third book is the recently published Family Meals: Coming Together to Care for an Aging Parent.  You can read more about his food adventures on his blog Notes from a Culinary Wasteland.