Pasties for St. Paddy’s

Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw once said “there is no sincerer love, than the love of food”.  His famous words could very well be my personal slogan for I am truly consumed with a passion for food that encompasses a global spectrum. While my truest fondness will always be Italian food, I do enjoy taking…

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Chiaccherie: What’s all the chatter about?

Carnevale, a time of celebration and indulgence, where masquerades and merriment take precedence and when the expression “fare due chiaccherie” takes on a whole new meaning. Many holidays in Italy are usually accompanied by culinary tradition, and Carnevale is no exception.  During this mardi gras period in the peninsula, delightful sweet, crispy strips known as…

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Must-Have Mastazzoli

If you’ve ever visited a fair or festival in Italy you have likely seen city squares crowded with banchini (booths) with vendors selling their wares or religious articles, souvenirs and regional fare.  Among them you will typically find mastazzolari selling celebratory confections known as mastazzoli (image from www.italyspecials.com) Mastazzoli, typical of Soriano Calabro (a town…

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Panettone Panini with Bauli Canada

Panettone, a classic confection of the Christmas season.  For those who may be unfamiliar with the sweet loaf, it is an Italian festive staple.  Hailing from the northern city of Milan, its name Panettone translates to “big bread”.  It is made of dough similar to sourdough that traditionally gets sweetened with candied orange peel, and…

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The Making of Marrons Glacés

Chestnuts rank highly among my favorite fall foods.  Their woodsy scent and earthy flavor immediately not only warm my taste buds, but my heart as well.  I have many fond memories associated with chestnuts, from taking in the wonders of Piazza Duomo with a warm little bag in my hands; to enjoying sweet chestnut cream…

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Preserving Memories is my Jam

To paraphrase the late Julia Child, people who love to eat and cook are always the best people.  More and more I find this to be true with some of the wonderful people I have made connections and formed bonds with.  This is particularly true in the case of my friend Joanna Sable. Hard to…

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Grape Conversations with Chef Aarón Sánchez

He’s best known as an award-winning chef, popular television personality, cookbook author, restaurateur, mentor and philanthropist. In addition to this, the tattoo covered, heat seeking co-star of Food Network’s Chopped is also a devoted father who is passionate about preserving and passing on his cultural legacy through food. Chef Aarón Sánchez firmly believes that by…

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Muffuletta: Quite a Mouthful

Summer may be winding down but there are still a few weeks left to enjoy seasonal activities like splashing around at the beach; seeking theme park thrills; foraging through woodlands; hiking or biking through beautiful trails; and grabbing a blanket and packing a picnic to enjoy at the park. Quintessential in my wicker basket is…

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