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Old Traditions Die, a New Pasta Shape with Red Lentils and Walnuts

The first half of my life was very much influenced by my Italian-American surroundings … my paternal relatives, my Brooklyn and Staten Island neighborhoods, and my extended family and friends.

That meant I grew up eating all the traditional “Italian” foods of that era. Continue Reading

Trick or Treat: Meatballs + Spaghetti with Vodka Sauce for a Creative Culinary Crew Challenge

Nova_50October 01- 2014Halloween_spaghetti and meatballs-Edit

It’s October — and that means Halloween. And you know what Halloween means … nothing is quite like what it seems.

The Creative Cooking Crew’s challenge this month is to have some fun with the holiday. I decided to play a little virtual trick or treat. But it turned out more like a ‘trick and treat’. Continue Reading

Sicilian Style Pork Meatballs on a Cheesy Butternut Squash Mash

I’ve got Sicily on my mind. After many trips to Italy, I’m finally looking south and exploring  a 2015 trip to Sicily and southern Italy. Yeah, I know, I recently said almost the same thing about a trip to the Yucatan in 2015. I’m doing both.

So, what makes a meatball Sicilian? Continue Reading

Summer Vegetable Salad with Plantain Crusted Fish

This will have you shouting !Olé! or something like that. It’s light and breezy — with lots of punch and crunch. Continue Reading

Roasted Asparagus Pesto and Parmigiana with Pasta

A really simple, quick and delicious pasta dish. Continue Reading

Baked Eggplant Involtini with Asparagus, Speck and Gorgonzola Dolce

This dish can be served as a first course, a side dish, a brunch item or a light lunch. Continue Reading

Cauliflower 3 Ways: “Cavolfiore Italianissimo”

Cauliflower, like brussels sprouts, had a bad reputation for a long time  … that is, until the “foodie revolution” slapped cooks upside their collective heads and made them stop boiling, over-cooking, or under-seasoning vegetables.

This month’s Creative Cooking Crew challenge is to present 1 vegetable (or fruit) 3 different ways. Continue Reading

Family, Food, and a Colorful Potato Salad Recipe That Was Totally Upstaged by Everything Else!

In my family we celebrate birthdays BIG. Sometimes big is even x2, like Sunday when we celebrated both Cassie’s 17th and Aurora’s 21+.

‘Big’ is the operative word because (a) we’re a lot of people and (b) we always make big menus for our BIG appetites. Generally, the meal revolves around a food request from the birthday person. And then the family cooks get cooking!

Continue Reading

It’s All About Balance and Building Flavors: An Interesting Pasta Dish

It’s the way I like to eat … balanced food groups and balanced flavors. Pasta with cabbage may seem a strange combination to some. Stranger yet, perhaps, is the addition of raisins. But, trust me, it works. In fact, it more than works. Continue Reading

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