Marlena de Blasi’s The Umbrian Thursday Night Supper Club

By Toria Emas

The women in The Umbrian Thursday Night Supper Club (TUTNSC) were strong characters who did not travel too far afield, but were strong forces in their own community. Dames Who Read do travel and brought some lovely ingredients to Diane Sokolofski’s house on a warm February evening. Diane arranged a bountiful kitchen island with all the ingredients that each member provided from a favorite trip or a pantry purge. This became the “Tuesday Night Supper Club” with all members participating in the dinner from cooking, setting the table to washing the dishes.

In the book the author was known as the stranger and at the Dames event Barbara Glunz was the token stranger since she had never participated in the book club. Her contribution of an Italian Aperitivo and wines including a Vin Santo were very much appreciated. Diane took the “local focus” of the book to heart. She prepared Italian Sausage procured from Local on West Willow and made her own Ricotta that Dames used in various forms on the hearty bread made by Stacey Ballis.

Other contributions ranged from Stacey’s chicken and cabbage to Julie Ratowitz’s homemade pomegranate molasses that Mary Kay Gill used on the baked pears with prosciutto. Sharon Olson brought Pecorino that was the most used item in TUTNSC and a pleasant Sicilian Rose’. Carol Haddix made a mouth-watering pasta dish with cream and three types of mushrooms. Jennifer Anderson assembled a green salad with fresh herbs, tomatoes and goodies from her many travels.

Polly Peters whirled the mixer preparing a savory dessert while Judith Himes orchestrated the timing and arrived with a basket of extra ingredients to complement the menu. Both Toria Emas and Priscilla Cretier remembered to bring their own napkins as the TUTNSC required. Toria also brought a 1998 Italian wine that paired perfectly with the meal. Her pistachios garnished the salad and bruschetta as well as the cheese tray. To ease the pressure on Diane, Kathy Ruff provided glassware and took over the dishwashing duty.

As with TUTNSC, Dames Who Read feel that the Book Club is an opportunity to support, sup and share life stories with sister Dames. The next date for Dames Who Read is April 4 at Shaw’s with special guest Joan Reardon discussing The Arrangement by Ashley Warlick.



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