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Not Just Mac & Cheese (Maccheroni alla mortadella al forno)

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Yes, this baked maccheroni casserole is essentially mac & cheese, but on a whole different level -- as with much Italian food, it's a simple preparation, but with quality ingredients that make all the difference. It's a quick, easy, and immensely satisfying dish which can easily be a main course when paired with a green salad or any other vegetable side. Get the recipe:

Not Just Mac & Cheese (Maccheroni alla mortadella al forno) originally appeared on About.com Italian Food on Saturday, May 31st, 2014 at 18:08:43.

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The Top 10 Myths about Pasta

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It seems like one of the easiest things in the world to cook: You boil some water, throw in some pasta, set the timer for the minutes indicated on the package, add a little oil to keep it from sticking, the buzzer rings and voila! It's done. Throw it onto some plates, ladle lots of sauce on top and you have dinner. Simple, right? And yet, in my opinion, there is no worse mistake in Italian food than soggy, overcooked pasta (and it's far too common). Misconceptions about pasta and the best way to cook it still abound, while methods and tips that Italians consider common knowledge might be news to many. Read on for everything you always wanted to know about cooking pasta (but were afraid to ask).

The Top 10 Myths about Pasta originally appeared on About.com Italian Food on Saturday, May 31st, 2014 at 13:30:36.

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Street Eats, Italian Style

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Mangiamaccheroni in a street in NaplesStreet food -- in the form of pop-up stands or roaming food trucks -- is growing more and more popular in the U.S., but throughout the world and history, street kitchens have long been the primary type of public eating establishment, before the birth of the restaurant as we know it today. In Italy, street food has existed since at least Ancient Roman times, when counter-serve "snack bars" called thermopoliasold hot prepared dishes. And pizza and pasta, two of the most famous Italian foods, started out as on-the-go snacks. In 19th-century Naples, it was normal to eat maccheroni at street vendors -- with one's hands! Pasta is no longer considered a street food (or a finger food, for that matter), but quick eats persist to this day throughout Italy at kiosks, stands, and food trucks. Here are some recipes for typical Italian street foods, to recreate the experience in your own kitchen.

Street Eats, Italian Style originally appeared on About.com Italian Food on Saturday, May 31st, 2014 at 13:29:25.

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The Bean Eaters

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Il mangiafagioli by Annibale Carracci, 1584In the past, Tuscans were called mangiafagioli("bean eaters") by other Italians, a clue to how important a part the ""poor man's meat" played in the Tuscan diet. Beans don't have quite such a central role these days, yet still appear in many traditional Tuscan dishes. And now that we know what nutritional powerhouses they are -- rich in fiber, protein, vitamins, and minerals yet low in fat, calories, and cholesterol -- it seems that bean-eating is due for a comeback! Here then, a couple of great legume recipes. (Image: Il mangiafagioli by Annibale Carracci, 1584)
 

The Bean Eaters originally appeared on About.com Italian Food on Saturday, May 31st, 2014 at 13:28:09.

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A Niçoise-style sandwich: Pane alla nizzarda

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Although I write about Italian food, I've just moved to France (Paris, to be precise), so the food traditions of the Mediterranean town of Nice (Nizza in Italian), with their strong Italian influences, are particularly interesting to me. The cuisine of the French Riviera town -- perhaps the most well-known examples being salade niçoise, tapenade, and ratatouille -- blends typical Provençal ingredients and cooking methods with those of the Italian regions of Liguria and Piemonte and often features olives, olive oil, anchovies, and plenty of vegetables. Think of it as French-Italian fusion! Read more and get the recipe...

A Niçoise-style sandwich: Pane alla nizzarda originally appeared on About.com Italian Food on Saturday, May 31st, 2014 at 13:27:37.

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The Perfect Dessert for Spring and Summer?

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Panna cotta with berries
It just might be panna cotta, which, despite its name (it translates literally as "cooked cream"), actually doesn't require much cooking, and certainly doesn't involve turning on an oven. This delicate cream-based spoon dessert, thickened with gelatin and served chilled, is also quite easy to make but makes an elegant impression when served at the end of a meal. You can serve it with fresh berries or a simple chocolate sauce, fruit compote or coulis. Recipe for Panna Cotta A traditional and popular Italian dessert originating in the Piemonte region. Get the recipe.

The Perfect Dessert for Spring and Summer? originally appeared on About.com Italian Food on Saturday, May 31st, 2014 at 13:26:17.

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Spring Vegetables

Buona Pasqua! Italian Easter Recipes

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Italians celebrate Easter in may ways throughout the different regions, but generally with chocolate eggs for the children containing toy surprises, roast lamb or goat, spring vegetables such as artichokes, and a colomba (dove) a cake made with the same dough as panettone but baked in the shape of a bird and topped with coarse pearl sugar and/or almonds. As a special Easter chocolate treat, together with a variety of traditional Easter recipes we have a recipe for decadent Bacio brownies, made with the famed chocolates from the Perugina brand. Buona Pasqua a tutti!

Buona Pasqua! Italian Easter Recipes originally appeared on About.com Italian Food on Monday, April 14th, 2014 at 11:22:56.

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Easy Weeknight Dinners

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Even in Italy, the land where the Slow Food movement originated, people are busier than ever these days. On a lazy Sunday you might have time to slow-cook your ragu' for hours, but on a weeknight, if you're just getting home from work, you're tired, and you don't have a lot of time or energy, you probably want something faster and simpler. Here are some dishes you can have on the table in less than 30 minutes, either start-to-finish, or by making them ahead of time and simply reheating!

Easy Weeknight Dinners originally appeared on About.com Italian Food on Monday, March 31st, 2014 at 13:03:49.

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Happy San Giuseppe's Day!

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The holidays in Italy seem endless, and each one has its special associated foods, which might differ from region to region. Part of the reason for so many holidays is the fact that every single day of the calendar year is the Feast Day of one or more Catholic saints. This doesn't mean that every day is a holiday in Italy, of course. March 17, for instance, the feast day of San Patrizio (better known in the English-speaking world as Saint Patrick), is not celebrated in Italy. (He is the patron saint of Ireland, after all.)

Food and the Feast Day of San Giuseppe
Today, though, March 19, the Feast Day of San Giuseppe (St. Joseph), is celebrated throughout Italy and in many Italian American communities. It's also Father's Day in Italy and it's traditionally celebrated with fried or baked pastries originating in Naples called zeppole (also known as bigne' or sfinge/sfingi/sfinci), They're usually filled with pastry cream or ricotta and dusted with sugar. Read more...

Fava Bean and Fennel Soup
One of the dishes traditionally served on the Feast Day of San Giuseppe, in Sicily, this velvety, flavorful puree incorporates the fava bean, considered a lucky charm as well as a token of St. Joseph. See the recipe for Fava Bean and Fennel Soup (Macco di fave e finocchietto).

Happy San Giuseppe's Day! originally appeared on About.com Italian Food on Wednesday, March 19th, 2014 at 10:00:56.

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The Last Supper Club in Chicago

View Original Article Fri, 30 Jan 2015 19:59:36 GMT

A look back at supper club guru George Badonsky, who passed away last month, and the death of Chicago supper clubs. Mr. Badonsky ran the last real supper club in Chicago.

Ca' Marco: the Montecito hedge between fine and comfort

View Original Article Thu, 29 Jan 2015 16:04:47 GMT

At Ca'Marco Ristorante Italiano, the main dining room is cozy and warm, not overdressed. A few framed pieces sporadically hang on the walls - as a whole, nothing especially curated.

On cooking: Chef Dez offers some fast, easy soup options

View Original Article Thu, 29 Jan 2015 04:41:12 GMT

Chef Dez is a food columnist and culinary instructor in the Fraser Valley. Visit him at www.chefdez.com.

Food for Thought: Idyllic Italian

View Original Article Thu, 29 Jan 2015 02:36:07 GMT

I love when I get asked to check out a new Italian restaurant! To me, Italian cuisine is the ultimate comfort food and as I am in the midst of wedding planning, I am in need of major comfort. On a Thursday night, I joined my friend Tonio for a night out at Santa Lucia Ristorante .

Fifty First Kitchen and Bar Coming to The Nations Soon

View Original Article Wed, 28 Jan 2015 22:26:56 GMT

Final preparations are being made for the opening of Fifty-First Kitchen and Bar , a new restaurant in The Nations , with a target date of early March. The restaurant is a partnership between Caroline and Anthony Galzin - veterans of several Chicago and Nashville restaurants as well as their own pop-up restaurants - and former Rumours co-owner Christy Shuff.

Cucina Neighborhood Italian Is Not the Red-Sauce Savior Dallas Needs

View Original Article Wed, 28 Jan 2015 18:17:00 GMT

Americans have an unhealthy obsession with Italian cooking: Unhealthy not only because the American interpretation of boot-food features an excess of mozzarella, Parmigiano-Reggiano and meat, but also because Italian American is one of the most popular imported cuisines. The pizza served stateside may bear little resemblance to the rounds served in Napoli, but what kid in the history of kids doesn't appreciate a giant, floppy slice? Just about anyone would swoon at the sight of a pot of tomato sauce slowly simmering, while lasagna noodles stacked high with ricotta and meat sauce warm in the oven.

The Provels' Self-Titled New Album Goes Down Easy

View Original Article Wed, 28 Jan 2015 12:07:36 GMT

In terms of local culinary customs, there is no more clearly demarcated line in the sand than Provel. You can tart up a toasted ravioli or pour a Busch Bavarian into a snifter, but there ain't no dressing up this ballast of St. Louis-Italian cuisine.

Juliet Replaces Romeo's

View Original Article Tue, 27 Jan 2015 22:39:08 GMT

Established restaurant spaces with shady, attractive patios and their own parking lots don't stay empty for long in Austin's white hot hospitality market.

New Orleans Winter Restaurant Guide 2015: Italian

View Original Article Tue, 27 Jan 2015 00:29:50 GMT

Amici Ristorante & Bar 3218 Magazine St., 300-1250; www.amicinola.com Amalfi pasta features shrimp and mussels in white wine garlic sauce over linguine. Lobster arancini are fried balls of risotto stuffed with Maine lobster meat.

Old Classic, New Classic: Italian-American Opulence at Bamonte's and Carbone

View Original Article Mon, 26 Jan 2015 22:24:32 GMT

All this week, as a Classics Week special, Eater is sending correspondents to classic New York restaurants and their newer counterparts, to see how the two compare. They'll report back on the scene at both, suss out the differences, and maybe even shed some light on what makes the classic a classic.

Crate & Barrel, Colletta, exhale Coming To Avalon

View Original Article Mon, 26 Jan 2015 18:10:16 GMT

The new year will soon bring several new tenants to Avalon, the $600 million mixed-used development along Old Milton Parkway in Alpharetta. Anthropologie, Antico Pizza and Caffe Gio recently opened to shoppers, joining the lineup of 50 retailers and 11 restaurants that opened Oct. 30. "We are thrilled to welcome the newest tenants to Avalon on the heels of an exceptionally successful Grand Opening," said Mark Toro, North American Properties managing partner.

Fazoli's bring the love of Italian foods to the freezer

View Original Article Mon, 26 Jan 2015 13:55:20 GMT

Fazoli's opened its first quick-service Italian restaurant in 1988 in Lexington, Kentucky. Best known for their unlimited, warm breadsticks, while dining in, Fazoli's is taking a new step with their love of Italian food.

A Night of Spaghetti and Smiles

View Original Article Mon, 26 Jan 2015 03:26:24 GMT

Preschoolers at the Primrose School of Five Forks and their families were served a delicious and healthy Italian meal on Thursday, January 15th as part of the school's Parent Appreciation efforts held throughout the year. The family time together was the special ingredient that produced so many smiles! To learn more about our trusted Partnership with Parents , stop by our school campus at 3030 River Drive in Lawrenceville, submit an online inquiry form or call 770.985.0028 to schedule at tour.

The Art of Italian Food

View Original Article Sun, 25 Jan 2015 17:57:07 GMT

Artista Salumeria specializes in traditional Italian cooking in an effort to emulate the best of the great Italian tradition of hospitality, quality, and simplicity at the table. The philosophy is easy and straight forwarduse the freshest local ingredients coupled with the finest imported meats and cheeses, and serve them with a flourish and joy! At Artista you will find traditional regional classics including seasonal prepared Italian foods, handmade pastas, house-made sausage and meatballs, cured salumi, artisan cheeses, panini, soups, antipasti, salads, and simple desserts.

Ciao Italia

View Original Article Fri, 23 Jan 2015 12:27:10 GMT

Mary Ann Esposito, host of the longest-running cooking show on public television, travels around the United States and Rome, Italy in search of recipes that can be prepared in thirty-minutes or less for a busy audience that has time to enjoy great Italian food but doesn' t always have time to prepare it "the old way."

Meatball Parmesan sandwich from Roma Cafe was The Best Thing I Ate Last Week

View Original Article Thu, 22 Jan 2015 13:44:11 GMT

In a quaint but spacious Italian cafe on the western edge of Mobile I found The Best Thing I Ate Last Week in the form of an incredible meatball Parmesan sandwich from Roma Cafe. Roma Cafe has been open about two years and over that time has developed a reputation for serving authentic, delightful Southern Italian cuisine.

Restaurant 'gets' Italian food -- capeesh?

View Original Article Wed, 21 Jan 2015 23:10:40 GMT

If you came from my hometown and from my family, you'd know right away what it capeesh means. For all the rest of you who were not lucky enough to be born Italian, it means understand.

 


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