Sunday Family "Mangia" Time at Nonna’s and Rogig – The Interesting Dish of the Day

Nonna means Grandma in Italian.  Domenica is Sunday in Italian.  Our Sunday tradition is going to Nonna’s house on Sunday to celebrate our life and family.  We laugh, cry, eat (mangia in Italian) and let ourselves enjoy our time together on this earth.

 Nonna Anna lives in an old house built in 1760s.  The house was an old Tavern and it existed before America was America.  It is so fun having our Sunday family meals in such an old and historic house.

One happy Sunday where Nonna Anna talks to the boys about how to "fix" a bike.

Each Sunday there is a feast of food from American burgers to Italian specialties like roasted chicken, pasta and salami.  It’s been a while since I  have contributed some Filipino dishes to our get togethers but I have prepared  dishes like sio pao (sticky bun),  sio mai (pot stickers), leche flan to name a few.

The interesting and delicious dish of this particular Sunday was introduced by an Armenian American friend of Nonna Anna.  The dessert was called Rogig and it is from Armenia.

At first sight you might mistake it for dried salami.  It has the texture of a luscious fruit roll up or dried fig with a rich walnut center.  It is definitely addictive because it is not too sweet!  I could imagine it being great paired with cheese and wine!

I included a recipe below that I found online.  I have not tried it yet, but I am excited to when I finish up the Rogig we brought home from Nonna Anna’s Sunday lunch.

I hope you have a happy Sunday and a great week ahead!

Recipe via Meal-Master ™ v8.01

Title: Rogig (Grape Walnut Candy)

Categories: Armenian, Candies

Ingredients:

3 qt Grape juice

3 c Flour

3 c Sugar

1 c Cornstarch

3/4 c Corn syrup

Walnut halves

What to do:

1.  First, string the walnut halves on thread. Using medium to heavy cotton thread, cut thread to about 24 inches long. With a thin needle, carefully pass the thread through the walnut halves, leaving some extra string exposed on either end. Knot both ends of the string.

2.  Blend flour, sugar, cornstarch and corn syrup. Add juice and mix until smooth. Pour half of the mixture into a large, heavy saucepan, bring to a boil and boil, stirring constantly, until mixture is thick. Remove from heat.

3.  Dip one string of walnuts at a time into the hot grape juice mixture several times, and let the excess coating drip into the pan. Transfer the walnuts to a drying rack – you can rig up a rack by propping a broom handle between two chairs; place a pan and newspapers underneath to catch the drips – and dry overnight. Reserve leftover cooked grape mixture.

4.  The next day, cook the remaining grape mixture. Pass the remaining mixture through a sieve and add to the grape mixture in the pan. Dip the walnuts several more times in the hot grape mixture. Hang to dry several days in a dark, cool place. To store or serve, remove walnuts from the string and rll rogig in powdered sugar. Store in a covered jar or tin.

NOTE: White grape juice or other fruit juices such as pear or apple can be used.

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