Not Just Mac & Cheese (Maccheroni alla mortadella al forno)
View Original Article 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.
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View Original Article 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).
View Original Article Street 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.
View Original Article In 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)
View Original Article 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...
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.
View Original Article 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!
Bacio Brownies (Brownies al Bacio)
I had the pleasure of speaking recently with Viola Buitoni, descendant of the Buitoni family that founded a food empire spanning pastas and sauces to the Perugina chocolate brand, makers of the famous Baci chocolates. She shared family legends and a recipe for luscious brownies made with Baci chocolate candies.
View Original Article 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!
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.)
Italian food lovers in the city will be happy to learn of a new European marketplace: After more than 50 years in Edmonton, the Spinelli family opened an Italian Centre Shop location in Calgary's southeast on Thursday. "We're bringing Italy to Calgary, from our home to yours," said Italian Centre Shop owner and President Teresa Spinelli in a release.
Cibo Wine Bar has opened a second location near the Yonge and Eglinton neighbourhood. With locations all over the world, including one on King West , Cibo Wine Bar is known for their modern Italian food and vibrant nightlife.
With so many places in the neighborhood to grab a mimosa and a plate of eggs on the weekend, how can you decide which is the best spot to take your visiting in-laws or where you'll want to sit quietly for a couple hours with the hair of the dog? The Park Slope Brunch Beat aims to guide you through the choices - we'll break down the basics, share some special tips, and provide a quick scorecard to help you pick the best place for what you need next Saturday and Sunday. al di la Trattoria opened its doors in 1998 and has developed into a cornerstone of Park Slope.
First Italian market to come to Enfield Town After saying bonjour to...
Enfield Town will host the market where you can find a whole host of Italian foods such as cheese, cured meats, specialty pasta, olive oils and balsamic vinegars, a variety of hot foods and specialty bread. Enfield council cabinet member for economic regeneration Cllr Alan Sitkin said: "Enfield Town has played host to two highly successful French markets, and now is the time to welcome the new Italian market.
Giglio's Restaurant closes due to owner's retirement amid battle with brain tumor
After more than 28 years of serving up authentic Italian cuisine, Giglio's Italian Restaurant and Bevanda closed Saturday, June 27. While owners Karen and Gary Giglio had been planning on retiring, Karen said it comes sooner than they expected due to her husband's health concerns. "This decision came earlier due to Gary being diagnosed with a brain tumor," said Karen Giglio, who has owned the eatery with her husband since its 1987 inception.
Something for the Weekend: Anniversaries, Wine Tasting, and More
The Medford Square storefront where Bestsellers Cafe was formerly located will serve as the future home of Italia di Gusto, or "Taste of Italy." The specialty grocery store/restaurant is part of an Italian franchise that has only one other US location in Ridgewood, New Jersey.
Lago is the latest restaurant in the expanding dining partnership between MGM Resorts International and Chef Julian Serrano whose previous successes include Bellagio's Picasso and Serrano's eponymous tapas restaurant at Aria . Opened in April in the space formerly occupied by Circo , Lago aims to build on Serrano's modern tapas reputation with a social interpretation of seemingly incongruous small plate Italian cuisine.
Dining out: Maggiano's delivers on its promise of plenty
The salmon with lemon and herbs at Maggiano's Little Italy restaurant at the Annapolis mall. When I was a girl, my family would occasionally venture from suburban New Jersey to Manhattan's Little Italy where the narrow streets were lined with trattorias and ristorantes touting "the best" Italian food in town.
Papaluccia s Italian restaurant in Long Beach a trip down memory lane
Despite the many gastropubs along Second Street in Belmont Shore that keep the street lively and then some, there's a parallel universe of old-school restaurants, dominated by a fair number of red sauce Italian joints that serve the sort of Southern Italian cooking so many of us long for, after many a meal of fancy risotto and arcane pastas. Which isn't to say we long for a can of Chef Boyardee, but sometimes, a bowl of linguine carbonara just hits the spot.
Olive Garden Overlords Say Quit Cleaning the Carpets So Much
Cherished pillar of Italian cuisine Olive Garden is getting some interesting new advice from its corporate overlords. According to Bloomberg , parent company Darden is now dictating that all Olive Garden restaurants reduce their carpet-cleaning efforts to once a month.
We've all heard that olive oil is good for us, but does that account for its surge in popularity? Supermarkets have entire shelves dedicated to different types of olive oils. In fact, olive oil production and sales is one of the fastest-growing global industries.
The Tropicana Atlantic City seems to be the talk of the Jersey Shore town these days, as the property literally brightened up the Boardwalk over the Memorial Day Weekend with the unveiling of a multimedia light and sound show -- including a 66-foot high curved LED screen. Starting July 11, the property, which went through a $50-million renovation, will offer weekly Saturday firework shows at 10 p.m. There also is plenty of fun to be enjoyed inside the massive beachfront resort, and it does not a require waiting until after Fourth of July.
The owners of an Italian restaurant in Chicago's Wicker Park neighborhood plan to open a second location in downtown Champaign. Nando Milano Trattoria expects to open later this year at 202-204 N. Neil St., in the space vacated last year by Carrie's Fabulous to Funky.