In my recent article for Zester Daily, I wrote about the gelato explosion. One thing is for sure, gelato is on the move from its Italian home base as more and more entrepreneurs set up shop all over the world using Italy’s state-of-the-art equipment, designed for small-batch, artisan production. Following up on my last post about Rimini, here’s the scoop about why I was in that famous beach resort last month. No, it wasn’t to sunbathe or take in the nightclubs. It was to join the World Gelato Tour which, after circling the globe and picking finalists along the way—including […more…]
Pickling hasn’t been this hot in America since covered wagon days when being able to preserve food for the long cold winters meant the difference between life and death (remember “Little House on the Prairie”)? Besides anything else, pickling is downright fun. If you know how to, you’re ahead of the game, but if you don’t, did you know that you can “quick pickle” in the time it takes to boil water and vinegar together? Here’s my latest article in Zester Daily for doing just that with the one crop that everyone always seems to have too much of, zucchini. Why […more…]
Besides home-grown tomatoes, green beans from my garden are the vegetable I most look forward to in summer. Right after my beans seeds went into the ground and my thoughts turned to eating them, it occurred to me to write Love Me Tender, a story for Zester Daily, about how I like them best. You may want to know my favorite way to cook them if you love them as much as I do, and if you don’t, you might change your mind after you read here.
Judging by the top picks of the savvy food crowd that reads Zester Daily, it looks like people just can’t get enough of Italian food. Good thing, because there are endless more tales to tell and dishes to make you smile, up my proverbial sleeve. Zester Daily is not any ordinary food publication, but a cooperative of experienced writers from around the world who bring you the fresh, the undiscovered, the “weird and the wonderful,” writes founder and editor, Corie Brown. Contributors don’t have to fit into any magazine template to sound and look like everyone else, or be muzzled […more…]
Around this time of year the food press sounds its perennial advice on pumpkin pie, but what is usually overlooked are the endless dishes, both sweet and savory, that you can make using edible pumpkins and squashes. Probably no one reveres the pumpkin as much as the Italians, and the Venetians in particular, the subject of my most recent article for Zester Daily, “Why Venice Adores its Pumpkins.” Read about the Venetians’ love affair with zucca, and find my heirloom recipe for savory pumpkin or winter squash stew with tomato, dry-cured olives, and garlic.
It’s not every day that you find a missing link to history–in this case, pasta history. Read about how I found a lost recipe, progenitor of the union of pasta and the tomato in, of all places, Brooklyn, New York. Then again, the site of the find was D. Coluccio & Sons, the iconic Bensonhurst Italian grocery. Maybe not such a surprise after all. After reading the new article, you may never again take for granted spaghetti and meatballs, or any other variation on the theme of pasta and tomato sauce. You wouldn’t imagine such a simple dish could be so splendid–and […more…]
NOTE: FOR SOME REASON, THE FIRST PART OF MY LAST POST EVAPORATED IN CYBERSPACE AS IT WAS ON ITS WAY FROM ME TO YOU, SO PLEASE HIT THIS LINK TO READ IT NOW–-AND THEN, COME BACK HERE! Right, so as I was saying, every August food writers feel compelled to tell their readers what to do about “zucchini fatigue,” as my NPR radio host called our zucchini abundance only yesterday while interviewing a couple of food experts and myself about “the problem.” The first interviewee speaking on the program, a fine cook and fellow cookbook writer, accused the poor vegetables […more…]
Zucca, in Italian, means squash; zucchini, the diminutive, “small squash” (the Italians snap them off the mother vine at three-and-a-half inches). So why are zucchini so often the size of baseball bats? You’ll have to ask the British about that, who call them “marrows,” and win the world records for growing giant vegetables at the Great Yorkshire Showground every summer. To read about the long and short of it, and learn to look forward to a bumper baby zucchini crop every summer, go to my new article for Zester Daily. There you’ll find the whole story of America’s gift to Italy, and the recipe […more…]
If you’re like me and love a good tomato sauce, you’ll want to read my new article in Zester Daily, “How to Master the Tomato Sauces of Italy” for tomato sauce wisdom and maybe, just maybe, my favorite “red sauce” recipe. I wrote it because—I kid you not–even after having written thirteen cookbooks about Italian food—four of them about pasta and the sauces it wears–and one about how to make tomato sauce specifically*, people still ask me what prepared tomato sauce I buy! My answer, “I wouldn’t dream of eating tomato sauce from a bottle!” The response, inevitably: “You make tomato sauce from […more…]