Author Topic: Mustachianism the Italian way  (Read 2405 times)

gargagnam

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Mustachianism the Italian way
« on: September 07, 2017, 09:38:21 AM »
I'm starting this thread as a beacon for Italian people or people living or retiring in Italy.

I would like for this to become a place to discuss anything that is peculiar to Italy (taxes, public wealth-fare...) and to share suggestions and tricks (cheaper phone plans...)




For better search ability let's mention Italia, Italiano

Meesh

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #1 on: September 24, 2017, 04:57:14 PM »
DH is Napoletano and I lived in Roma 1 year and Napoli 4. We are in the states right now but I could easily see us living there in FI. We have a home there still, and I kind of love the free health care and university for the kiddo once he get's older.

Ideally we'd get a place in maybe Lazio. Forse Gaeta. What part of Italy are you thinking to retire in?

gargagnam

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #2 on: September 24, 2017, 11:20:47 PM »
Hi, nice to meet you.
I live in a small town in Lombardia, not far from Como lake.

There are probably cheaper places, but living where your family is can be very helpful.

Italy can be a good place to live in FI: the free healthcare, nearly free university, state provided pension means that you usually get a decent life even when very poor.

I find it a bit harder to reach FI due to lower wages and higher taxes. However, in my opinion what really lacks here is someone like MMM that shows the path and gives good suggestions.
Most of the information I find online is US-centric

Meesh

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #3 on: September 25, 2017, 09:04:06 AM »
I know exactly what you mean. We learned about FI many years ago and had to just take the concepts and try to adjust them for Italia. We just tried to cut our expanses drastically. It might take a bit longer because of higher taxes but you also get more out of those taxes. For example in the states health is about 550 euro a month for 3 people. Something we never had to account for in Italy.

I don't have any great examples for you as far as things to use specifically. We just had TIM phones LOL but that was before smart phones were normal. But I'd suggest just doing a bit of research. MMM is all about getting dirty and doing the hard work to get a better life for your family. Go ask friends and search online to find new deals and compare bills, check out different supermercati to compare prices. Use a machinetta instead of going to the cafe' hihihi. If you like cinema go on half off day and don't get snacks. Cancel sky and go to a friends for the football game. Little by little your expenses will go way down. Senza apartamento, we lived easily off of 500 euro in the early 2010's for 2 people. Its very doable.

You say you live in a small town. How far are you from work? One big way to cut down is driving less especially in Europe where petrol is soooo high.
« Last Edit: September 25, 2017, 09:16:26 AM by Meesh »

gargagnam

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #4 on: September 25, 2017, 09:48:06 AM »
Thanks for the response.

My "problem" is that I've already caught the low-hanging fruits. Just to mention your examples: for the mobile phones I have e relative working for Wind and he gifted me a special offers that basically means I pay everything half the price. I don't drink coffe (as shockingly it can be for an Italian), don't have sky (I'm not a huge soccer fan, other thing that make me un-italian) and go to the cinema once in a year or two (star wars films!). I have a mortgage but I scored a big win on that and interest are now only 0,33%, which means my money are better invested elsewhere. I'm lucky enough to work remotely for my company, so no car involved (well, I still own one but it stays parked most of the days)

The biggest expense in my budget at the moment is the weekly shop at the supermarket, which I'm trying to lower. But that's the hard part.

Thank you for your encouragement!

Meesh

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #5 on: September 25, 2017, 01:14:35 PM »
It sounds like you are doing really great!!

I think in any country you start to top out and it becomes very hard to cut expenses further. At that point you just have to stick to it and keep an eye out for new deals. But it sounds like you already have some awesome deals so they might be hard to beat.

Groceries was one of our hardest to get lower as well. We just went to basic auchen but even now we try to keep a few cheaper meals around like aglio olio and peperoncino and frozen in the fridge we have pasta frittata and homemade pizza. Sometimes minestrone with left over vegetables can get you away from the supermarket another day. They are no cacciatore di agnello but a couple of cheap dinners a week goes a long way. We always look at it like a game. If we do better than last week we are happy and over time it will slowly lower. How much are you spending now on food?

Otherwise if you are looking to save more, you might consider a side job, something many mustachians do. For example, your English is very good have you thought of freelance translation?

It's nice to hear another Italian's perspective on FI. You've got this!

gargagnam

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #6 on: September 25, 2017, 02:29:43 PM »
Unfortunately I'm not doing that great... My saving ratio is just around 30% (this year I hope to reach 50%).

What I think about my position is that I've to switch from "cut-expenses" mode to "mustachian" mode: adding more diy and finding more creative ways to spend less (or, as you suggested, earn more)

I currently spend at the supermarket (I'm unable to split between actual groceries and other stuff like soap and so on) 400Ä per month (we are a family of four)
My plan to reduce groceries cost is to start planning the week meals: this way I should be able to keep average meal cost down by carefully choosing what to eat and only buying what's needed. And as an added bonus I'd probably eat healthier!

Meesh

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #7 on: September 26, 2017, 08:49:53 AM »
I agree, I think you can get your supermarket spending down, maybe even way down. Meal planning is a great idea and should help a lot.

"mustacian mode" is definitely a way of life but that's when the fun skill building starts to come in. Fixing up your house, mending your own clothes, gardening, making gifts. They may not "cut expenses" down much but you'll notice annually for sure. Bonus points if you take your new skills and people start paying you to do them!

Also you mentioned interest rates on mortgages are very low. Have you thought of buying another home and renting it out? I'm not sure about these laws, we own our house outright in Italy, but it could be a great way to hit that 50% goal. Especially if you buy a cheap place and fix it up yourself.

gargagnam

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #8 on: September 26, 2017, 09:54:08 AM »
Yes, I though about buying another house and renting it out - but there are disadvantages.

The mortgages rates are generally low - but not so low. I have a very low one due to some fortunate choices and coincidences. Back when I bought the house rates where high but the bank had a special offer for young people under 30 that provided a low (by then standards) fixed rate for the first 5 years, after the fifth year we had to choose between fixed rate (eurirs + bank spread at 0,6) or variable rate (euribor 3 months + 0,6 spread) and an option to switch from the two at any time. We choose fixed rate at first, but then 2008 happened and rates dropped so we switched to variable rate, and since euribor is currently negative we only pay 0,3%.
New mortgages are not that cheap.

There are also differences between "first home", where you live and other houses: both taxation and mortgages rates are higher in that case.

And third, renovations require a lot of paperwork and diy is difficult because the laws require a proper technician to sign off the work.

Summing up, yes I though of it (and know other Italian mustachians that are into that) but it's a big investment and I don't have the guts to do that yet.


Meesh

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #9 on: September 27, 2017, 06:07:30 PM »
I totally understand, renovations and renting out is a big deal with lots of planning and you want to make sure its worth it.

I'm not sure if this is possible but my grandfather once worked with the contractors he hired to renovate his house. By doing this he was able to learn the skills and keep costs lower since the contractor didn't need assistants. That way you'd also be able to get all the paperwork done as well. Just something to think about if you do ever take that big step.

Keep me posted on that grocery bill!

Hula Hoop

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #10 on: October 22, 2017, 04:01:35 PM »
Ciao Italian mustachians.  I'm not Italian but live in Italy.  As you say, salaries are low and taxes are a killer here.  I'm surprised that one of you said upthread that healthcare is free where you live in Italy.  I know this varies by region but in my region healthcare is only free if you are 'esente'.  When I go to a specialist or take my kids to a specialist I usually have to pay quite a high "ticket" (somewhere between 30 euro and 80 euro).  And often there are no appointments available through CUP so we end up going intramoenia - my daughter's specialist doctor charges 120 euro for this! So our family of 4 ends up paying quite high health care costs.  Not as high as the US but pretty high considering the amount of tax we pay here.

I'm wondering what you all think about a seconda casa as an investment (rented out on Airbnb or some other way)?  We already own a prima casa but have enough for a down payment on a very small seconda casa in the city where we live.  Or can you recommend other good places (similar to Vanguard) to invest locally? 

BTW complimenti for your English. 

gargagnam

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #11 on: October 23, 2017, 01:51:26 AM »
Ciao Italian mustachians.  I'm not Italian but live in Italy.  As you say, salaries are low and taxes are a killer here.  I'm surprised that one of you said upthread that healthcare is free where you live in Italy.  I know this varies by region but in my region healthcare is only free if you are 'esente'.  When I go to a specialist or take my kids to a specialist I usually have to pay quite a high "ticket" (somewhere between 30 euro and 80 euro).  And often there are no appointments available through CUP so we end up going intramoenia - my daughter's specialist doctor charges 120 euro for this! So our family of 4 ends up paying quite high health care costs.  Not as high as the US but pretty high considering the amount of tax we pay here.

I'm wondering what you all think about a seconda casa as an investment (rented out on Airbnb or some other way)?  We already own a prima casa but have enough for a down payment on a very small seconda casa in the city where we live.  Or can you recommend other good places (similar to Vanguard) to invest locally? 

BTW complimenti for your English.

Ciao,
and nice to meet you.

You're right, healthcare is not completely free. You're also right that lot of people need or choose to consult a private practice to avoid the long queues of the public service, but I'd still consider healthcare quite cheap - especially compared against US.
You get free access to a "medico di base" for all basic needs and all life-savings treatments and cures you receive in the hospital are usually free or extremely cheap. You don't get broke to fight cancer.
But I'm biased since I live in Lombardia which is usually reported to be on the efficient side of Italy.

What bothers me even more than taxes here is usually bureaucracy. There's a lot of paperwork for everything and when you have to deal with public offices you have the feeling that there's some sort of presumption of guilty.
Just as an example: I got fined because of a mistake in the tax reports. The fact was the mistake wasn't there, and my accountant was able to demonstrate it and the fine was ultimately waved. But,I had to pay for the extra work my accountant had to do in order to get the fine waved. So, because of a mistake of the tax collector I ended up paying anyway.

On the bright side, I still love too much this country and my town to even consider leaving.

As per your questions:
- I think that if there's a good time to buy a second house is now. Rates are down and mortgage are quite cheap. But also consider the hurdles: everything is more expensive for a "seconda casa": taxes, mortgages and usually even utilities are higher. I'm not familiar with Airbnb on the guest side and how that could or should work with italian taxes - so I'm not able to give a good suggestion here. But I know Simone, another MMM reader is also looking at that type of investment. I don't know how to mention people on this forum, but will send him a DM to this conversation
- Unfortunately there's nothing like Vanguard in Italy. Best option imo is to buy etfs. You can get the Vanguard ones quoted on Amsterdam' stock exchange (a bit more expensive than the us ones, but still cheap and still UCITS compliant for taxation) if your broker allows and doesn't charge an extra for trading on that stock exchange. If you prefer something quoted on the italian stock market or accumulating ETFs I'd suggest iShares ETFs, they are usually the cheapest and are big fund with good liquidity. I'd go with SWDA which is the msci world and you may also a bit of EIMI (emerging markets) if you're ok with a bit more risk or some bonds etf (like EMG) if you prefer that.
As a broker I'd suggest Fineco. It's a good, cheap bank overall and it also includes the "deposito titoli" to hold the etfs. Regular operations are not very cheap, but they offer a service called "Replay" where you basically create your ideal portfolio selecting one or more etfs and they'll buy a quote of every etf every months (you decide how much to invest).
This service is quite cheap, and if you invest some money every month this is a very good solution because it is automated forcing you to save and saving you from bad decisions. If you chose more than one etf it also has an option keep the portfolio balanced, so every month it will buy different amounts of etfs to keep the overall portfolio at the proportions you have set.
I also keep some money in deposits (conto deposito) they don't provide good return at the moment, but should protect from inflations and the capital is guaranteed: they serve as a good short term park for the money. For this I use Rendimax and last time I checked they were still offering the best rates (although they have been recently lowered)


Hope to hear more from you.

Bye

ps: thanks for the compliment. I work remotely for a foreign company so I get to exercise my English every day

simone

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #12 on: October 23, 2017, 07:16:43 AM »
another italian fellow reporting.

I'm new to the MMM forum, but I've been a MMMans for quite some time. I'm 12-24 months away from FIRE. As per my current money allocation I'm with Degiro where I have a considerable chunk of my money in TSLA, AMZN, and VTI.

I live in Switzerland, but totally planning to spend FIRE in my homeland, beautiful Italia. I'm from the Po Valley, but my plan is to live in the south part of the peninsula (food/sun/weather/cheaper).

Ciao,
S.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2017, 07:18:51 AM by simone »

Hula Hoop

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #13 on: October 23, 2017, 01:42:09 PM »
Simone - you could be in for a huge culture shock being from the North of Italy and moving to the South.

About healthcare - this really depends.  When I lived in the US I had a great job and excellent health insurance.  Obviously not everyone has this but I was lucky.  I paid very little for it and when I did have a short hospital stay had excellent care in a clean hospital with my own private room.  Here in Italy when I've been in hospital, the medical care itself was fine but the hospitals are often dirty, crowded and not well maintained.  After the birth of my second child, I shared a tiny 4 person room with a communal bathroom down the hall.  Some of the nurses were downright rude and the food was horrible.  I'm grateful for the care I received but at the same time I pay for this through my taxes so it's not free. 

Thanks for all the investment advice.  I need to talk to my husband about this.  He's pretty conservative and believes in investing in "mattone".  In a way, I agree with him with real estate prices being so low right now along with interest rates but I'm not sure if a "seconda casa" makes sense because of taxes.

Let's talk about being a mustachian in Italy. What ways have you found to live cheaply here?  Here are some of mine:

-buy a lot of staple foods at Tuo Di rather than the more expensive supermarkets ie. canned tomatoes, canned beans, flour, sugar, mozzarella and other cheeses, wine, rice, paper towels.  We're particular about certain foods though (like pasta and coffee) so we buy them at the more expensive supermarket
-shop at the local food markets (mercato) and try to shop on a Saturday afternoon when things get cheaper.  We often get cheap fish and fruit this way.
-eat limited amounts of meat and fish as they are really expensive.  We tend to eat lots of pasta and I make lots of bean based dishes as they are cheap.  I also make lots of quickbreads (banana bread, pumpkin bread, corn bread, muffins etc.)
-buy most of our clothes and our kids' clothes when visiting family in the US.  Also electronics.  These things are waaaay cheaper there and better quality for the price.  I also find US Ebay a million times better than Italian Ebay (or kijijji).  I buy makeup on Ebay in the US.
-things we don't buy in the US, we often buy second hand.  There's a great mercatino twice a year at the kids' school and we snap up bargains there.  We also gladly accept handmedowns.
-don't own a car.  Cars are insanely expensive here and not that necessary if you live in the center of a city like we do.  Trains are great in Italy and we also walk most places or take public transport.  A lot of our friends think we are crazy though.
-when we bought our apartment in 2015 we bargained down the price 30% - prices are very trattabile right now. 
-do as many medical exams etc with ASL as possible.  Go through ridiculous red tape in order to save money.
-same with paying less for school meals.  Getting the ISEE was a huge pain but worth it for the money we save.
-bank with ING rather than the other Italian banks that charge high fees.
-swap kids' books with other parents since there is no library near us. 
-Netflix (shared with several family members) rather than SKY.  My husband loves football but he watches it at the bar.
-if we go out with friends we often have pizza as it's cheap
« Last Edit: October 23, 2017, 02:01:29 PM by Hula Hoop »

gargagnam

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #14 on: October 24, 2017, 02:47:54 AM »
Sorry to hear the state hospital and healthcare in general in your region. Here in Lombardia may not be as good as in US hospitals, but are generally better. Well, at least clean and not overcrowded.
In general I agree that private healthcare offers better care and some times even more advanced treatments, but only if you are well covered. Anyway, I don't have experience of healthcare outside Italy (actually, not even outside my region) so I can't judge.

About being a Mustachian: I still have a very long way to go.
- Fortunately we are "natural savers" and overall simple people. We don't have Sky nor netflix, don't go eating out more than once or twice a year, I go to the cinema just once a year or even less and so on and I never felt missing anything. Our weekend luxury is visiting my parents or my in-laws and have lunch with them.
- We don't have "Tuo Di" here. There are other "discount" but we tend to avoid them because quality is usually lower. We buy most of our grocery at Esselunga. It is not very cheap, but quality is good and vegetables are usually very fresh and last longer. Good thing about Esselunga is that you can covert collected stamps/points into 10Ä coupons. They also have an ecommerce and deliver directly to your home. We tried this a couple of time to save time and possibly avoid impulse buy.
Another options we consider is Iperal. We don't like it very much, but frequently runs very good promotions so we go there and buy thing that can be stocked, like soap, detergents, diapers and so on.
Overall we try to be mindful about promotions and prices but we need to do a better job, as the weekly groceries are roughly a third of our expenditures.
- You're lucky to be able to buy stuff in the US, they are usually cheaper. I have the same feeling about eBay or Craigslist: here there's way less things on sale and most of it is crap or overpriced
- for kids clothes, we mostly bought nothing for the first 5 years since we got everything handed down. This is quite common here, or at least in my family. Another good "source of clothes" are birthday and Christmas gifts. Also, we have both our families nearby and they help out with caring for the kids so we didn't need a babysitter or the kindergarten
- we do own a car (11 years old now) but seldom use it. I work from home and my wife takes the train. We mostly use it just for the grocery shopping and travelling for the summer vacation. We live in the country, our town is small but has almost anything we need in term daily life but owning a car is almost unavoidable for occasional stuff (i.e. reaching the hospital). The car runs on GPL, which is cheaper then gasoline.
- For books, we are happy with the local library. Every town in the province here has one and they are all networked. They also have a website where you can order any book from other networked libraries and get it delivered to your local library: very convenient. They also rent movies on DVD.
- I try to lower utilities cost, especially for energy. I'm swapping out old lamps with led ones and moved from Enel to Eni that was offering better prices at the time I made the switch. We have a "bioraria" so we try to run energy expensive appliances (i.e. dishwasher) during the night, when energy is cheaper.
- I'm trying to build some DYI skills. Two months ago I built a big drawer to put under the bad, and I'd like to build some more insulation into my home to lower the heating bill
- My wife's uncle has a garden where he grows some vegetables, so from time to time we have free vegetables. This is something I'm eyeing as well. Would also make for a great hobby and a fun learning occasions for the kids
- We live in a small apartment. From time to time if feels a little too small, but costs are low and it is well positioned so that we can reach everything in the town by foot.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2017, 02:51:48 AM by gargagnam »

simone

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #15 on: October 24, 2017, 10:47:09 AM »
(being the Łberlazy I am, Iíve copied your structure in my answer)

Being from Lombardy myself, I find the hospitals to be quite good there, I always had good time (except, well...for the fact I was in a hospital the first place).

On Being Mustachian: as any good Mustachian, you learn new superpowers every single day.

  • As gargagnam, Iím a natural born saver, I currently save 68-72% of my monthly salary. I do not own a TV set, I just own a personal PC (linux) and a bluetooth speaker box. I share a netflix account with more people I like to admit.
  • Iíve started saving when I was 12 years old. This happened in the kitchen. I was shocked by the skills my uncle had (he used to be a chef for the italian military units). I realized that I could do my own food without relying on others. Iíve been learning and improving since. To the point that Iíve seriously considered doing that as a professional cook and go to culinary school. Instead I went thru several patisserie and haute cuisine trainings over the years. Just for fun and to improve my skills in a specific area. This is why I hate to go to the restaurant: most of the time I get way worse food than what I prepare at home on a daily basis.
  • I usually shop at Lidl, and at markets, I pack, cook, freeze, vacuum seal everything and use in-season produce when they are off season. i.e. for lunch I had some vacuum sealed red-curry soup with sesame rice that I prepared when zucchini where in season.
  • I have a trusty butcher, and being into long and complex meat preparations I normally buy cuts that sell for 4euro/kg (reale di manzo, costine), and then prepare delicious meals with them. Filetto cannot stand a chance against a second choice cut. Trust me. :)
  • Having traveled the world Iíve acquired an asian and middle eastern taste, so I tend to shop vegetables at rundown chinese shops. Cheap.
  • Amazon is my friend when buying staple food: canned tuna, sugar, pasta.
  • Iíve not had a car for the last 10 years. Best decision so far in my entire life. I own a bicycle, and a skate.
  • I live in a small apartment with barely no furniture: one table, one king size bed, one small wardrobe, 2 chairs, and one carpet.
  • I worked my *ss out to get to the high paying job that I currently have, and I try to keep the most part of the salary which goes directly to excellent Vanguard VTI.

The closer I get to FIRE, the more impatient I become about it.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2017, 02:39:03 PM by simone »

Hula Hoop

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #16 on: October 24, 2017, 01:31:21 PM »
Hey Simone.  I love cooking too and worked in kitchens during high school.  I also thought about becoming a chef but seeing the hours my colleagues worked, I decided against it.

Would you be able to share some of your cheap meat recipes - preferably in Italian?  My problem is that I don't know the cuts of meat in Italian so can't cook my tried and true recipes.  Do you use a pressure cooker? 

I also shop a lot at the Chinese and Bangadeshi markets near me.  Cheap homemade tofu is the best and I love Indian vegetarian food.  Unfortunately, Lidl is too far from my house to walk to and I don't want to take the bus with 2 kids and tons of shopping bags so I shop at Tuo Di.  I didn't realize that Italian Amazon was cheap for staple foods - I have to check it out. 

simone

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #17 on: October 25, 2017, 12:28:54 PM »
hey Hula Hoop,
I have the same issue, since I tend to read english only recipes. Here is a page I use when explaining cut of meats to my butcher, there is side by side italian/english translation as well as a picture of the cut itself: http://www.bbq4all.it/tagli-del-bovino-americani-e-italiani/

During summer season I mainly do texas style BBQ (for beef short ribs or skirt steak), in winter I'm using a slow cooker for a good chuck roast (arrosto di reale di manzo) with carrots, onions and 2 cans of Guinness stout.
« Last Edit: October 27, 2017, 08:15:03 AM by simone »

Hula Hoop

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #18 on: October 26, 2017, 01:02:59 PM »
Oh I love Texas BBQ.  I used to live in Texas although I'm not Texan and I developed a taste for Texas BBQ and also Tex-Mex.  I thought you needed a smokehouse outside to do Texas BBQ properly though which would be pretty difficult in my apartment.  But maybe you have that?  I also love all the sides you get with Texas BBQ. 

I'll try the arrosto di reale di manzo with Guinness although if I buy two cans of Guinness they won't survive long in our house with my husband around.  We have a slow cooker.  How long do you leave it on for approximately?

I just got back from a big shop at Tuo Di.  For a while the stock was disappearing as it was in bankruptcy proceedings but the stock seems to be reappearing so I guess they must have worked out a deal.  I got some yummy things for cheap including buffalo mozzarella, jam, rolled oats (fiocchi d'avena), canned tomatoes, dried beans, flour, wine, dishwasher tabs, hand soap and some banana yoghurt for the kids.  The prices are easily 30% less than the more expensive supermarket near us (Conad).  But I don't buy certain things there ie. meat, coffee, pasta, cereal and prepared foods as the quality is not so great.

My best friend also told me about a library she goes to the center.  I'm going to go with her probably next weekend.  Unfortunately, the hours aren't great for a FT worker like me though.

simone

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #19 on: October 27, 2017, 08:59:31 AM »
Oh I love Texas BBQ.  I used to live in Texas although I'm not Texan and I developed a taste for Texas BBQ and also Tex-Mex.  I thought you needed a smokehouse outside to do Texas BBQ properly though which would be pretty difficult in my apartment.  But maybe you have that?  I also love all the sides you get with Texas BBQ. 
I own a small weber smokey mountain, perfect for my casual need.

I normally prepare coleslaw, baked beans, pico de gallo, and guac :)

Quote
I'll try the arrosto di reale di manzo with Guinness although if I buy two cans of Guinness they won't survive long in our house with my husband around.  We have a slow cooker.  How long do you leave it on for approximately?
8 hours should be enough...
http://allrecipes.com/recipe/16346/maries-easy-slow-cooker-pot-roast/

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I just got back from a big shop at Tuo Di.  For a while the stock was disappearing as it was in bankruptcy proceedings but the stock seems to be reappearing so I guess they must have worked out a deal.  I got some yummy things for cheap including buffalo mozzarella, jam, rolled oats (fiocchi d'avena), canned tomatoes, dried beans, flour, wine, dishwasher tabs, hand soap and some banana yoghurt for the kids.  The prices are easily 30% less than the more expensive supermarket near us (Conad).  But I don't buy certain things there ie. meat, coffee, pasta, cereal and prepared foods as the quality is not so great.
it seems they are in the process of being acquired by both aldi and penny.
« Last Edit: October 27, 2017, 09:02:51 AM by simone »

Hula Hoop

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #20 on: October 27, 2017, 03:16:06 PM »

I own a small weber smokey mountain, perfect for my casual need.

I normally prepare coleslaw, baked beans, pico de gallo, and guac :)

I have to laugh at the idea of an Italian cooking Texas BBQ in a weber with coleslaw and baked beans.  But I also think it's really great.  So many Italians seem to think that American food =s McDonalds and make knee-jerk comments about how terrible it is.  But at the same when I cook them really simple standard US recipes - like banana bread, brownies, chocolate chip cookies, cheesecake, pancakes with maple syrup or even potato salad they love it.

Hula Hoop

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #21 on: October 28, 2017, 02:17:45 AM »
Another question for the Italians - any opinions about Eolo for internet service?  A nerdy friend recommended them and they do seem cheaper than my current internet provider (Vodafone) but I have no idea if they are any good. 

simone

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Re: Mustachianism the Italian way
« Reply #22 on: October 29, 2017, 02:27:11 PM »
Eolo provides quite a good service (outstanding if you compare it to the big-ISP DSL service you can get in rural Italy). I love their customer care team.