Here’s just a few of the websites I use to help me travel, live and work abroad. These are great resources that have helped me A LOT A LOT A LOT.
What it is: classified ads for Berlin, Madrid, and Barcelona. Find jobs, apartments, language exchange partners, etc
What it is: classified ads for Rome. Find jobs & apartments
What is is: Find nanny/au pair jobs in France. EXCELLENT. I used this in Paris. Don’t be discouraged by it being in French. Pull up Google Translate in a diff window, and become a premium member (6 euros for 1 month, roughly $8). WORTH IT
What it is: Flight search, and one of the best. Almost always has the cheapest prices but always cross-reference with other sites like Kayak.com and Cheapoair.com (dont bother with Orbitz or Priceline)
What it is: Find families to Au Pair for, also can be used to find students for private English teaching. I’ve written a lot about this because it is the best Au Pair service ever. Don’t bother with premium - you’ll get contacted by families.
What it is: Mash up of resources for every type of travel - from farm work, studying abroad and volunteer work to culinary travel. This is what I used when I decided to move abroad for the 1st time - it’s how I discovered Au Pair work.
When it comes to cooking, pasta in its different shapes and forms is the adhesive that unifies Italy - but there are great regional differences. Only a few dishes are considered ‘national dishes’; each region has its own typical food, cooking methods, and recipes, as well as dialects. This is due to centuries of small city states before the country, at least on paper, fairly recently was “united”. The Unified Kingdom of Italy only happened in 1861. As a result, Italy is all about regional food. To experience the best of Italian cuisine, one should try typical dishes in their home region. There are some trends that allow the division of Italy into 3 general areas, coinciding with the approximate geographical division into North, Center, and South.
North: Gastronomic tradition here revolves around hearty food, hot soups, minestrone, vegetables like radicchio. The Northern tradition is based on dishes richer in fat, more of cold weather and mountain foods. Cheese, truffles, apples, polenta, risotto, mushrooms, speck, butter, game, gnocchi, and Germanic influences with buckwheat and potatoes. Example: Pizzoccheri, short tagliatelle made with 80% buckwheat flour and 20% wheat flour, cooked along with Swiss chard or Savoy cabbage and cubed potatoes, layered with cheese, and dressed with garlic and sage that are lightly fried in butter.
Center: The Center is renowned for being the area of heavy-bodied foods: Pecorini (cheeses from sheep’s milk), Scamorze (cow’s milk cheeses similar to Mozzarella), Insaccati (sausages), and Sottoli (pickles/preserves). Umbria is famous for truffles and mushrooms. Some special pastas here include: paste fresche, maccheroni, and spaghetti alla chitarra, often with sauces containing meat and game. The meat of choice in this area is pork.
South: Southern food is typical Mediterranean cuisine. A lot of fish; shellfish on pastas or pizzas. Pizza in Naples it’s relatively thick by Italian standards. Mozzarella and other dairy products are specialties here. A lot of herbs and spices are used, seasonings like basil, oregano, citrus, red pepper. tomato-based sauces. Mozzarella di Bufala Campana is the pride of the South. All cooking is done with olive oil while in the North, butter is often used.