Archive for August, 2011

Scrumptious Italian Desserts

Scrumptious Italian Desserts

One of the biggest fallacies in the Italian culinary world is centered on the idea that Italians do not eat dessert.  Italians do, in fact, enjoy dessert and the items consumed range from creamy gelato to luxurious cakes and icy granita to mind blowing cookies.  Here are some irresistible photos, including gelato, pastries, cookies, and granita – all scrumptious Italian desserts!

Panificio or Italian Bakery: The Bread of Italy

Panificio or Italian Bakery: The Bread of Italy

To say that bread is an important part of day-to-day life in Italy would be an understatement.  In fact, it’s more likely that the Italian political and economic system will be reformed over the next couple of years than it is that Italians will change their longstanding relationship with pane or bread.   Most modern Italians still buy artisanal bread [...]

Tomatoes in Season: Summer Tomato Salad Recipe

Tomatoes in Season: Summer Tomato Salad Recipe

(photo: lovely friends are rare in life, lovely friends who give you heirloom tomatoes are the equivalent of Saints; thank you Dr. K.)  One of the loveliest times of the year for individuals enamored with food here in the northeastern section of the United States is late August because, amongst other fruits and vegetables, the tomato crop is in full swing.  Here in New [...]

The Figs of Calabria

The Figs of Calabria

The Figs of Calabria One of the nicest aspects of visiting Calabria during the summer and early Fall is the abundance of fresh fruit available and the ease of securing it.   Consider, for example, that if you’re lucky enough to own a small parcel of land, and the desire to cultivate it, you’ll be guaranteed seculant peaches, pears, grapes, plums, [...]

Cured or Marinated White Anchovies: Alici Fresche Marinate

Cured or Marinated White Anchovies: Alici Fresche Marinate

Walk down any street in the seacoast town of Bagnara Calabra during the summer months and you’ll encounter women dressed in black screaming their lungs out!  No, the ladies aren’t auditioning for a new Jean-Paul Sartre play about existential angst, rather they’re selling fish.  The ladies set up shop early in the morning, usually during outdoor “market day” on Tuesday and [...]

Pecorino “Monte Poro” Aged Sheep’s Milk Cheese from Calabria

Pecorino “Monte Poro” Aged Sheep’s Milk Cheese from Calabria

  (photo: small block of Pecorino “Monte Poro” from Calabria)Sit down for a meal at any restaurant or home in Calabria and you’ll most likely encounter some variation of sheep’s milk cheese; specifically, Pecorino.  During our recent trip to Calabria, for example, we ate Pecorino 4-5x per week and often mixed in a platter with local salumi and olives.

Stovetop Eggplant Parmigiana

Stovetop Eggplant Parmigiana

One of the interesting culinary tidbits in Calabria is that most home cooks do not use their oven during the summer months given the intense weather.  The logic makes sense, however what does the dedicated cook do when s/he has a desire to make a baked dish?  Well, how about using your stovetop? Zia Giovanna used her stovetop to prepare a [...]

Returning From Vacation in Calabria: Italian Living as Art

Returning From Vacation in Calabria: Italian Living as Art

Driving on the A3 autostrada from the Reggio Calabria airport to the village of Pellegrina (a tiny Comune di Bagnara Calabra) my mood changes instantly.  I’m greeted by a penetrating sun, flowing sea breezes, and intoxicating smells of earth.  The greeting has come courtesy of Calabria, the terra of my parents and the very foundation of my soul. Yes, I’ve been [...]