Archive for category: Italy

The Italian Mafia

The Italian Mafia

The Italian mafia is over 3,000 years old and much of the available literature on the logic behind why the Italian mafia formed is centered on numerous periods of invasion and exploitation by conquering states and armies in Italy.   Thereafter, Italians became “clannish” and started to rely on “familial ties for safety, protection, justice, and survival”, according the FBI. Four Large Mafia [...]

Easter in Italy

Easter in Italy

Buona Pasqua – The Tradition Of Easter In Italy Easter is a special time in Italy and it’s the second most important religious holiday behind Christmas for most Italians.  According to the Nicean Council (A.D. 325) Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday after the first full moon after the Spring Equinox (if the first full moon also rose on a Sunday, [...]

Italian Christmas Foods

Italian Christmas Foods

Italian Christmas Foods - An Food Guide to an Italian Christmas At this point in the holiday frenzy, you’re either preparing to host a holiday party or you’ve been invited to a Christmas Eve / Day dinner or lunch.  If you’ve been invited to dinner then get down on your knees and pray the host can cook!  If you’re hosting Christmas [...]

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 [...]

2010 Sangaspano Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2010 Sangaspano Extra Virgin Olive Oil

  (photo: Sangaspano extra virgin olive oil from Messina, Sicilia) On the morning of December 28th, 1908 a massive earthquake and associated tsunami hit the western province of Calabria and moved across the Stretto di Messina into Sicilia destroying city after city (including Reggio Calabria and Messina).  In Messina alone 60,000 people were killed and in Calabria our family lost many [...]

10 Top Italian American Food Fallacies

10 Top Italian American Food Fallacies

When I asked readers on our Facebook fan page to name a few Italian food fallacies I was expecting a response but I was, frankly, overwhelmed with the feedback to our simple question.  That is to say, while I’ve experienced many of the overt food fallacies found in Italian American cooking (both in professional and home kitchens) there were some items [...]

Pastificio Caponi Pontedera Tagliatelle Review

Pastificio Caponi Pontedera Tagliatelle Review

  (photo: packaging is first rate, if not a little wasteful)  We’ve covered the pasta shape tagliatelle here on Scordo.com in the past (via the Scordo Pasta Challenge) but we decided to review the pasta shape one more time given the quality of Caponi Pontedera tagliatelle and the fact that it’s an egg based pasta (pasta all’uovo).   Pastificio Caponi [...]

The Five Things We Love About Calabria and the Italian Life

The Five Things We Love About Calabria and the Italian Life

By now you know of our connection to the region of Calabria in southern Italy and our familiar, immigrant, story. You know, for example, that our parents immigrated to the U.S. from a tiny hilltop village in southwest Calabria called Pellegrina in the 1970′s and that we’ve been influenced greatly by the traditions found in the region.  However, we’ve never told [...]

An Italian Christmas: Traditional Italian Holiday Foods

An Italian Christmas: Traditional Italian Holiday Foods

Christmas is just around the corner and if you’re celebrating an “Italian Christmas” then you’ve most likely heard of the Feast of the Seven Fishes.  The traditional Christmas Eve dinner is steeped in folk tradition and as Maria Laurino writing for the NY Times has said, the ritual varies from region to region, including the number and type of fish served. [...]

Sfalassà Bridge in Bagnara Calabra: One of the Tallest Bridges in the World

Sfalassà Bridge in Bagnara Calabra: One of the Tallest Bridges in the World

Tucked neatly in the upper left hand corner of the above photo is the Sfalassa Bridge in Bagnara Calabra, Calabria.  The Sfalassa Bridge crosses both the Lucanian and Calabrian Apennines mountain range in southern Italy and is part of the the Autostrada Napoli-Reggio Calabria or A3 highway. As HighestBridges.com writes: With dozens of tunnels and towering bridges, it is a showcase of Italian [...]