It was a quiet January day in Modena, started slowly and shrouded in a light morning fog at the first light of dawn when Anna, a woman in her sixties with a lively spirit and a passion for cooking, received an unexpected call: “Mum, tonight Marta and me we will have dinner with you!”. The enthusiasm about her son’s return to the city accompanied by his girlfriend overwhelmed her and immediately lit a new light inside the house with the windows overlooking the Ghirlandina tower. Anna’s first thought ran to the dishes to prepare to spend an evening that would warm not only the heart, but also the stomach. Like a good rezdora she immediately got to work, put on her black coat and went out on her bicycle. Once she arrived at the doorstep of the butcher’s shop from which she had been getting supplies for decades, she fixed her hair and entered, ringing the bell.
“Good morning Anna, nice to see you! How can I help you today?”
“Good morning to you Franco! This morning Giuseppe called me to tell me that he is coming home for a few days and is also bringing his girlfriend. I was thinking to prepare some tortellini in broth to refresh them from the long journey, so I would need your top quality mince.”
“Great… it’s been a long time since he’s been back to Modena if I remember correctly, isn’t it? Look Anna, I’ll prepare the meat for your stuffing right away. Shall I also add some cuts for the broth?”
“Absolutely!” “However… ”
Franco left the sentence hanging for a few seconds, certain that the suspense would help the lady to deicde. “Well, I’d like to know what you have planned to offer him as a main course.” Anna felt tension pervade her body: she was so focused on her tortellini prepared according to the traditional family recipe that she hadn’t thought about the rest of the menu at all. Franco, seeing the customer in difficulty, immediately ran to her aid.
“I’m asking you because I have a proposal – a recipe that I tried firsthand during the holidays that have just passed and I’m sure that it will win over Giuseppe and his girlfriend! It’s a very quick recipe, ideal if you don’t want to waste your time between one course and the other and enjoy the company of your child to the fullest: scallops with mixed dried fruit, served with Balsamic Vinegar of Modena with juniper scents. That little bottle on the shelf on the left, the Bronze Label! The combination drove me crazy. It was a real feast for the palate. You know I wouldn’t suggest it to you if it wasn’t really something absolutely exquisite.”
“I trust you, Franco! For me, you are always a certainty!
Convinced by the butcher’s experience, Anna left the shop with a nice loot: ground meat for the tortellini filling, perfect cuts of beef and chicken for the broth, scallops enough to feed an army and athe precious bottle of Bronze Label Balsamic Vinegar of Modena.
“This dinner will be a success, I can feel it!” With this sweet conviction and anticipating the time she would soon spend with her son and his girlfriend, she got back on her bicycle and headed home.