Please leave a comment.

I love receiving and reading comments ~ please leave one.
If you are a regular I am pleased to see you again ~ make yourself at home. If you are new to my blog, welcome too, and please introduce yourself and I will reply very soon.

Saturday 17 October 2009

The Sunday Roast

 Lola says 'Ciao and Buon Appetito'

If we bumped into this lovely young Italian/American lady in Rome I am sure most of us would know her immediately as our dear bloggy friend.  Here she is tempting us with yet another delicious bunch of grapes. I think I might have slightly more difficulty recognising her from the second photo until perhaps she might say, "Hey, Edoardo Luciblù, it's me!"  That's Italian folks for Eddie Bluelights.

This week's interview is with Eleonora "Lola" Baldwin
who writes the blog Aglio, Olio & Peperoncino.

Thank you Lola

(This interview was initiated by David at
Authorblog and it is my pleasure to publish it)

Here's the first of the standard questions. Why do you blog?

I came to the blogosphere to learn. And I did. I learned that trying to get exposure for my freelance writing, and luring potential publishers into considering my manuscript is only what initially drew me to blogland. I learned that pretty soon I came back each day to learn more. It began as a food blog and now it’s a regular journal of not merely things I cook, but also feel, see and live out. I began blogging to peer out of a new window, and here I am inviting in, absorbing, chatting, counselling, weeping, laughing, enjoying the triumphs and sharing the tragedies of the authors of the blogs I interact with. I learn each day that blogging is an opportunity to enrich my life and those of others. Mostly I learn that — for all I thought I’d learned — there is far more I still haven’t.

What's the story behind your blog name?

“Aglio, Olio e Peperoncino” is a popular Italian recipe and a favourite of mine. A quick-fix solution made with three simple ingredients, besides the pasta of choice (usually spaghetti) they are: garlic (aglio), oil (olio) and spicy red chilli pepper (peperoncino). These three seemingly unconnected, rather unobtrusive elements, when simmered together in a wide-bottomed skillet, create a sinful mixture that bestows immediate satisfaction. It also constitutes the base for a majority of Italian recipes: just add shrimp and you have a tasty seafood entree, spill it over crushed raw tomatoes and basil, and you have foodgasm-pasta, sauté it with fresh greens and you’ll get a droolworthy side dish. I chose the Tasty Trinity as name for my food ramblings because I hoped to reflect – similarly to the writing within – redolent aromas, supple textures and a hint of chilli pepper spice: a toothsome base on which to cook up a myriad topics and aspects of myself.

What is the best thing about being a blogger?

I love the freedom of being me. Blogland is a place where I am entitled to talk about whatever I want, without worrying if others are interested. I can celebrate my life without feeling conceited. Or narcissistic. I can share my recipes and snippets of Italian lifestyle without fearing I am pushing them on anyone. I can connect with others that share my same interest. Mostly, I can connect with those that help me to see life from a different point of view. Blogging makes me feel loved by and connected to the world in a way I've never felt before. Daily blogging has become so much more than just posting-reading-commenting: it’s rather like a virtual tour around the world. I go on a nature walk in Germany; I attend a literary discussion in France. I pray with a friend in Canada, and then I drink Pimms in a garden in England. I go on a photo safari in South Africa, bow to Ganesha in a palace in Jaipur, and go surf in California. I eat sweet potato soup in Queensland, do some gardening in Oregon, drive down a trail in Montana, and I laugh with new friends all over the globe all in the same day. Not only is this trip free of charge, but I receive swag full of advice, kudos and affection too! And then there’s that other small detail, the Cascading Generosity, I call it. And I don’t mean the free give-aways. I mean the other stuff bloggers give out daily: information. Everyone I “meet” seems eager to share what they know. And some of my blogFriends have gone so far as to send me actual gifts in the snail mail too! On different occasions, I have received artwork, handwritten letters, audio CDs, books, beautifully crafted notes and photos, toys, markers and paintings for my son. One fellow blogger is even planning to start an overseas food exchange!

What key advice would you give to a newbie blogger?

I’ve only been blogging for 7 months, so I can’t consider myself the seasoned advice-giver. I got a better understanding of what blogging means only fairly late—how wide and deep the blogosphere really is—and how much impact blogging continues to have. The essence of the experience of blogging for me is exploring everything about ourselves, and the world outside us. My advice is to dive in, be yourself and pay it forward. I envy and admire those men and women who plunged into blogging first; and I’m filled with gratitude for the way they are mentoring the rest of us. I think the blogosphere is still in its early explorative stages—so in a sense I feel like we are all pioneers. The pace of change is happening at a speed so fast we can’t even grasp it; the rules are breaking before they are made.

What is the most significant blog post you've ever read?

The touching A Different Flame by Maithri Goonetilleke, author of the blog The Soaring Impulse. It deeply moved me and gave me a forward thrust towards understanding how useful blogging is in bringing help to the underprivileged. I stumbled upon Maithri fairly soon after I began exploring blogland, and it was love at first post. I have an enduring nostalgia and totally delirious adoration for Africa, the place that immediately felt like home, and where later my son was conceived. Maithri’s words brought me back to the Motherland’s warm and mysterious nights, its sheltering sky and its perennial suffering. His post showed a side of Africa that many of us pretend is not there.Another soul-stirring writer and blogFriend is Erin, author of the weblog Woman in A Window. All the very personal posts - and poems published on her other site “In Through the Back Door” - cause overwhelming emotional tsunamis too.

What is the most significant blog post you've ever written?

Many of my posts are personal accounts in to which I sneak a recipe. The Source and Wedding Crashers are perhaps the two I enjoyed writing the most.But I also publish posts where I bare myself, my family and my experiences, opening up to places where I share secrets and innermost feelings and emotions. The ones I am most proud of are stories that – in one way or another – deal with children: E’s flowers Tiny heroes The sky’s on fire


Today's Sunday Roast with Lola is the 86th in a weekly
series of interviews with bloggers from around the world.

This interview will feature in The Roll of Honour
for all published Roasts. To view press
HERE ______________________________________________________


  1. Oh...... I am the first!
    Really pleased to meet Lola! I thought it was a really good interview and the Italian food sounds delicious. I just LOVE Italian food!

    There are lots of songs with *Lola* in , but I don't want to show my age!

    Nuts in May

  2. Very good interview.
    I've been following Lola for a while, and I love her blog. Her recipes are great- simple, easy to follow, and they work. I love her insights into Italian life too, even if they make me green with envy and wanting to just up sticks and go live there.
    Well done Eddie!

  3. I very much enjoyed this interview. Lola is interesting and encouraging to me, as a newbie in the blogger realm. I am already an addict and in the morass of San Francisco's budget cuts and the loss of my forensic nursing position of 21 years - and subsequent retirement from 44 years as a registered nurse, blogging has helped sustain me.

  4. This was great Eddie, I am so pleased to be roasted by you!
    I will write a longer, fuller comment later, I'm rushing out the door now, taking MrE to the cinema to see "Up" hope he enjoys. I know I will...

    Lola xxxxxxxxxx

  5. Lola's blog is great and I love her ideas of being a blogger because they so relfect my own. Wonderful interview; must go congratulate Lola.

  6. one of my favorites...her post wedding crashers was the first i read of is one of the posts that greatly changed how i blog and tell stories. great roast to a well deserving blogger and friend.

  7. Thank you Eddie for this introduction to, for me, a new blogger. I shall go over and meet her...I can smell the garlic from her.

  8. What a terrific roast of an absolutely amazing lady!! Thank you, Eddie!! Hugs, Janine

  9. Eddie, Thanks so much for taking the Sunday Roast over for David. It was one of my weekly "must reads".

    Lola is terrific. Her advice on blogging-- "dive in, be yourself and pay it forward.." are words to live by.


  10. I look forward to going to Lola's blog.
    Great job, Eddie.
    Smiles and love to you, my friend.

  11. Great job, Lola. Thank you Eddie for featuring Lola's blog. She has been one of my top favorites for a while. I go to her blog to relive my childhood in Italy.

  12. Wonderful interview! Lola's writing, stories and recipes inspire me on a daily basis, and I'm so happy to see her in the spotlight. Thanks!!

  13. Blogland would not be complete without Lola`s recipe and chat! Thank you Eddie, and dear Lola, I`m glad you mentioned Dr.Maithri and his "soaring impulse" to help! It is such a joy to lift our eyes above our own "plate" and see how vast and colourful our world really is.
    Yours is one of those blogs which draw us all together, our meanwhile huge blogging family, and thank goodness Lola`s kitchen table is big enough to hold us all. She is definitely one of our shining stars!

  14. Great Interview! Lola's glog is full of great intuition, insights, terrific writing and wonderful stories and recipes! Her warmth and friendliness shines through the writing!

  15. Another fine roast, Eddie. Nice to meet you, Lola. :)

  16. I adore Lola's blog! I am so glad others will now discover her! Heavne knows the woman CAN cook :). But her ability write about food, history, tradition, and make it simple, inspiring, and interesting proves she is a gem!

  17. Ah the Roast! Always looking forward to Sunday because of this.
    I have yet to make friends with Lola. She sounds like a very lovely person. This is quite a delightful interview.

  18. Wow! I really like the way she thinks :) I agree with her in totality. It is so good to be connecting with people across races, religions and continents. An opportunity we wouldn't have got otherwise! I'd come back to revisit the links she has given :)

  19. What an utterly delightful blogger and interview. I recently started following Lola's blog and it may well turn me into a person who cooks! Now that's impact! Thanks, Eddie, for the tasty roast!

  20. Great job, Eddie. I love Lola, she's so sweet. And her blog makes me very hungry :-)

  21. Yes Lola's blog is a wonderful journey and it also makes me feel hungry for good food :)

    best wishes


Thank you for your comment. You are most welcome to my humble abode.