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Italian Food: Most Popular Articles

These articles are the most popular over the last month.
The pasta and broccoli cook together in the...
The pasta and broccoli cook together in the same pot -- for a self-made sauce!
How to Make Homemade Pizza from Dough to Toppings
Italy has many traditional pizza toppings, for example the quattro stagioni, which I have never come across in pizzerias elsewhere. Here's a quick rundown. Page 3.
Homemade Nutella (Chocolate-Hazelnut Spread)
An easy recipe for homemade chocolate-hazelnut spread (Nutella).
How to Get Perfectly Cooked Pasta Every Time
Cooking pasta is easy, but there are rules to pasta cooking that will lead to perfectly cooked pasta every time.
Josephine Caravetta's Pickled Eggplant Recipe
Josephine Caravetta's Pickled Eggplant: Anne has very kindly replied to another person's request with her Grandmother's pickled eggplant.
How to Pick, Prepare, and Serve the Perfect...
Many in the English-speaking world would call this a Porterhouse and wonder what the fuss is about. And they'd be right in most cases; though Bistecca alla Fiorentina is featured prominently on the menus of almost all the restaurants in Florence, finding a good one isn't at all easy. But when you do it's heaven on earth, delightfully rich, flavorful rare meat so tender it can be cut with a spoon. Much of the secret is the breed of cattle, Chianina beef...
How to Make Traditional Caponata alla Siciliana
The dish more people probably associate with Sicily than any other is caponata, a (generally) eggplanty delight that has now spread throughout the Peninsula -- a zesty summer dish that's ideal for perking up an indolent appetite on a hot day.
Classic Northern Italian Lasagna alla Bolognese
Lasagna is as regional as everything else in Italian cooking. If you ask for it in Emilia Romagna or Tuscany, you'll get lasagna alla bolognese: pasta smothered with Bolognese sauce, béchamel sauce, and lots of grated cheese. In short, classic winter comfort food.
Culatello, the most prized cold cut of Parma. Page 36.
37 Italian Ravioli, Tortellini, and Stuffed...
Almost every region of Italy has some form of stuffed pasta. A quick overview and many recipes.
Try a Glass of Italian Lambrusco Wine This Summer
Lambrusco is the perfect wine for a picnic, cookout, or light meal.
Fresh Porcini: What to do with them? Or, How To...
Porcini are Italy's most valued wild mushrooms by far, and when fresh are a great treat: you can grill them, stew them, make sauce with them, and more.
How to Make Your Own Giardiniera (Italian...
Giardiniera, or mixed pickled vegetables, is what most Italians think of when they hear the words Sotto Aceti, a collection of mixed pickled vegetables. The standard Italian antipasto misto wouldn't be quite right without these, and they also work very well with boiled meats in the winter months.
Funghi Porcini
Porcini are one of God's great gifts to Humanity, a mushroom delicate enough to flavor a sauce, yet vigorous enough to stand up to a grilled steak with Barolo. How to buy and how to cook.
How to Cook Octopus So That it Stays Tender
How to Boil Octopus so as to make it Tender, or Lessatura del Polpo per Ridurlo Tenero: Octopus is delightful, but it can be devilish to cook, going from soft and tender to rubbery and back as it sits in the pot; the trick is to either remove it before it goes rubbery or have the patience to wait until it passes through that phase. Here's a trick for boiling it that will yield tender octopus every time.
Pumpkin gnocchi in browned butter and sage sauce
Pumpkin gnocchi in browned butter and sage sauce
24 Classic Italian Baccalà (Salt Cod)...
Baccalà is salt cod sold by the slab, and you might think it an unlikely food to get excited over. But you'd be wrong, because well-cooked baccalà is a delight: Firm, slightly chewy, and not at all fishy in flavor. But very good, and easy to prepare too.
Pumpkin Roman-Style Semolina Gnocchi with...
A recipe for baked pumpkin 'gnocchi alla romana' (Roman semolina gnocchi) with a gorgonzola topping.
Northern Italian Cuisines
Northern Italy comprises eight regions: Liguria, Valle D'Aosta, Piemonte, Lombardia, Trentino-Alto Adige, Veneto, Friuli Venezia-Giulia, and Emilia Romagna. Quick overviews of the cuisines, and links to regional recipes.
The Pasta Shapes Gallery
There are a great many kinds of pasta in Italy. Here's an expanding list of the most popular kinds, with suggested recipes, possible substitutions, and alternate names for them.
Cavolo Nero:
Cavolo nero, black leaf kale, is a leafy cabbage that doesn't form heads, but rather resembles palm fronds, with deep greenish black leaves that can be up to a yard (a meter) long, have pronounced ribs, and whose surfaces have a distinctive bubbly appearance. It's quite tasty and perfect in hearty soups or over (or in) polenta.
How to Cook the Perfect Risotto: The Basics
Making a good risotto is rather like riding a bicycle: It takes a little bit of practice to begin with, and a certain amount of concentration thereafter. But making risotto is easy, and quite satisfying
How to Make a Creamy Italian Four Cheese Sauce
Pasta ai Quattro Formaggi, or Four Cheese Sauce for Pasta: I was recently asked for a four cheeses sauce for pasta. Here are a couple variations on four cheese sauce.
How to Make Mostarda - A Spicy Italian Condiment
Though the Italian Mostarda does contain mustard, it's only distantly related to the yellow stuff in the squeeze bottle. Rather, it's fruit preserved in syrup that gains quite a kick from a healthy jolt of powdered mustard seed or essence, and is one of the standard condiments served with boiled meats in northern Italy. It's easy to make at home, and also makes an excellent gift.
Spaghetti with Squid Ink Recipe - Spaghetti al...
Squid ink is just what it sounds like -- the ink of the squid, and it adds both a sea tang and a deep black glow to this recipe. You will likely have to go to a fishmonger who has very fresh fish to obtain it, but it's worth the trip.
How to Make Tuscan Sopressata at Home
Larry asked, much too long ago, if I had a recipe for sopressata. Like many other Italian words, sopressata's meaning varies considerably from place to place. In much of the Peninsula it's a raw, pork-based salami that's been squashed slightly during the curing phase and is thus flat; the spicing varies from place to place according to local tradition. In Tuscany, on the other hand...
Modenese little hats, tasty meat-filled pasta for broth
Southern Italian Cooking: Regional Cuisines and...
Southern Italy comprises 6 regions: Abruzzo, Basilicata, Calabria, Campania, Molise and Puglia. Quick overviews of the cuisines, and links to recipes.
Neapolitan Tomato Sauce Recipe - Salsa di...
Though slow-cooking pomarola is quite tasty, there are times you'll want something quicker -- that's when this classic Neapolitan tomato sauce, known in the US as Marinara Sauce, comes into play. It's perfect for pasta, but will also work well with rice or pizza.
Classic Sicilian Arancini di Riso (6 Delicious...
In addition to being fine snacks, these golden filled rice balls make excellent antipasti at parties, and if you make several small batches with different fillings they'll work very well with other fried foods as part of a fritto misto (mixed fried foods). Or you may want a lighter meal, and just serve them with a tossed salad.
How to Make Homemade Pasta at Home
Pasta need not be pale yellow or cream colored. If you add puréed vegetables, chocolate, or other ingredients to your dough you can obtain a wide range of delightful hues. Here we have green, orange, black, red, brown,and speckled. Page 2.
How to Make the Perfect Italian Spaghetti al...
Pesto Sauce is a classic garlicky basil sauce from Liguria. Pesto sauce is also one of one of the finest summer pasta sauces.
The Perfect Italian Pastry Cream
Crema pasticcera, pastry cream, is one of the basic ingredients used in Italian pastries and cakes: it's the creamy custardy filling of the layer cake, or the cream you find in your morning pastry, or the creamy base of your pudding. In short, Italian desserts wouldn't be quite the same without it.
Bacio Brownies (Brownies al Bacio)
Recipe for Bacio Brownies from Viola Buitoni of the Perugina chocolate family.
Italian Fruits and Vegetables
Frutta e Verdura: Photos of fruits and vegetables from Italian produce markets
How to Bake Pizza in a Wood Fired Oven
There are two kinds of pizza: Pizza baked in an electric or gas oven, and Pizza baked in a wood-fired pizza oven, which is far superior. Setting up an oven is quicker and easier than you might think, and you'll be amazed by the pizzas that it will yield. You can also use a pizza oven to bake bread and roast meats, fish, and vegetables.
Classic Roman Spaghetti Aio Oio
Spaghetti Aio Oio, with garlic and olive oil, is the one dish that all Italian men know how to make. It's also quite popular as a late night snack among friends, say after a night out at the theater.
Everything You Need to Know about Polenta
Polenta is easy to make, and the home made variety does taste better than what you can buy in a store. Never made it? Here's how. Page 2.
How To Fry Zucchini Blossoms
Zucchini and squash blossoms are (I think) one of the most delightful summer vegetables. They're good stuffed, but divine when fried.
How to Make a Beautiful Procini Mushroom Risotto
Mushroom risotto is wonderful, especially in the fall when the mushrooms are freshly dried.
Ten "Italian" Foods You Won't Find in Italy
When most Americans think of Italian food, I'm willing to bet that many (if not all) of the items on
How to Dry Orange or Lemon Peel at Home: It's...
How to Dry Orange or Lemon Peel at Home: It's quite easy.
Italian Pizza Toppings & More
Pizza toppings and Calzone Fillings.
Finocchiona is a Tuscan salami made with fennel. Page 37.
If you drive out into the country from just about any place south of Rome you'll soon find yourself driving through citrus groves: Oranges, bitter oranges, lemons, tangerines, clementines, grapefruit... And, since citrus fruit easily cross breed, new things such as the Miyagawa, which is, as its name suggests, a Japanese development: A cross between grapefruit and clementines or mandaranci. Page 57.
Recipe requests come in waves. In winter, people write for instructions on making cold cuts from pork: Salami, prosciutto, salsiccia, finocchiona, pancetta, and so on, which are collectively referred to as salumi. In the past these were all made when hogs were butchered in late fall or early winter, and set aside to guarantee a supply of meat during the warmer months when uncured meats would spoil rapidly.
Pasta: Sauce or Gravy? Or Ragú? No matter what you call it, it's satisfying.
Pecorino Romano
Pecorino Roamno is an anciant cheese, enjoyed by the Romans and still very popular even now.
Finocchiona: Tuscan Fennel Salami
Finocchiona is a variation on regular Tuscan salami that is flavored with fennel seeds. A fine sandwich meat.
Pasta and Bean Soup Recipe - Pasta e Fagioli -...
Pasta e fagioli, also known as pasta fazool (and many other variations on the spelling) is a universal comfort soup that almost everyone has come up with, and there are a tremendous number of local variations on the theme in Italy. This particular pasta e fagioli recipe is Tuscan.
Apple Risotto Recipe - Risotto alle Mele -...
Apples are extraordinarily versatile in the kitchen, and though they are most commonly associated with pork in savory dishes (in Italy too), they work quite nicely in this apple risotto, which is certain to delight children of all ages.
Mozzarella Lasagna Recipe
This lasagna with mozzarella recipe is easy, quick to put together and cook if you use sheets of lasagna that need not be pre-boiled.
The Truth About Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
All about extra-virgin olive oil fraud and how to find, buy, store and use true extra-virgin olive oil.
Prosciutto Toscano
When I was younger, a friend of mine's mom would make prosciutto in the back room of their apartment under the eves in downtown Siena, and I remember how good that room smelled as I watched her scoop handfuls of salt over the ham one day. I haven't ever tried making it myself for want of space, but here is how.
The Most Comprehensive List of Classic Italian...
Almost every Italian city and town has its specialties, and there are regional trends too; the end result is a huge number of local cuisines rather than a single national cuisine. However, there are some dishes that you will find almost everywhere, and that are now standards among the many Italian communities scattered across the globe. Enjoy!
Italian Regional Cuisines
Italian Cooking is extremely regional, with new specialties every few miles. An overview of this wonderful state of affairs.
Favorite Fall Risotti
As temperatures fall off in Autumn, warm, and even hot foods become welcome again. Risotto is quick to cook, brings warmth to the table, and is ideally suited to all sorts of fall ingredients, from mushrooms to apples to sausages. Much to choose from!
How to Make Authentic Italian Bruschetta
Bruschetta is one of the simplest things in the world to make, and can be very satisfying if you have good extravirgin olive oil.
The Top 10 Myths about Pasta
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,
How To Make Crema Pasticcera, or Pastry Cream,...
Step by step instructions for making crema pasticcera, or pastry cream, one of the basic ingredients used in Italian and French pastries and cakes.
Tuscan Tomato Sauce Recipe - Pomarola
There's no dish quite so refreshing on a hot day as a bowl of pasta seasoned with lots of freshly made pomarola (Marinara in the US) and a handful of grated cheese. This recipe expands well, and most households make gallons of it when the flood of tomatoes reaches its peak in August, forcing the prices down. It can also be adapted to canned plum tomatoes.
Neapolitan Meatballs with Raisins and Pine Nuts...
Raisins often go into meat dishes in southern Italy, and here is a Neapolitan recipe for meatballs with raisins and pine nuts, served in a quick tomato sauce.
On Mostarda
Mostarda is a classic North Italian fruit condiment that gains a healthy kick from powdered mustard or mustard essence. It's wonderful with boiled meats, or cheeses, and is quite easy to make. It's also an excellent gift.
The Origins of Tiramisu
Some say Tiramisu was invented in Siena, in the late 1600s, to satisfy Grand Duke Cosimo's sweet tooth, and that it subsequently became a hit with the courtesans. Others say it was invented much later by a restaurant next door to a House of Ill Repute in Treviso, and became popular in the 70s. Who's right?
DOCG, VdT, DOC: what does it mean?
What the abbreviations on Italian wine labels mean
Pasta alla Carrettiera Recipe - Cart-Driver's...
Pasta alla Carrettiera means Card-Driver's Sauce, and is the sort of thing one expects to find in a truck stop -- simple, tasty, and satisfying. It's usually pasta served with a spicy tomato sauce, though there are also unusual variations on the theme.
Italian Peasant Foods, Cucina Povera
The Italian equivalent of peasant foods would be cucina povera. Frugal recipes that were once belt tigthening, but that cooks are now revisiting in a slightly richer modern key. Fine eating!
2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil a Day Might Keep the...
Olive oil is quite healthy: It lowers bad cholesterol, has antioxidants that can prevent cancer and improve organ function, and may even protect from age-related dementia. In short, a food that could be sold in the pharmacy.
How to Make Italian Barolo Wine Braised Beef
Brasato al Barolo, beef braised in Barolo wine, is one of the classic, elegant Piemontese dishes, and really does require a hearty red wine, ideally Barolo, to come out right. Save it for a special occasion, and you'll be quite pleased with the results.
Stuffed Olives Ascolana Style Recipe - Olive...
Stuffed Olives Ascolana Style, or Olive all'Ascolana: These stuffed olives are from the Ascoli region, and if at all possible you should use olives of the Ascolana strain, which are large and flavorful. These stuffed olives are generally classified as an antipasto, but will also work well as a first course, or as part of a platter of mixed fried foods, and are an excellent finger food.
How to Make A Piadina Romagnola
La Piadina, Romagna's flatbread, is extremely popular. Little wonder; it's tasty to bite into, wonderful when spread with cheese, and it's easy to make!
Lasagna with Parsley Riccotta, Beef, and Pork
Lasagna with Ricotta: When I was growing up, I was always rather taken back by the ricotta that I found in lasagna in the US -- there wasn't any in what I had in Tuscany. This is because putting ricotta in lasagna is southern tradition that reaches its apex with the glorious Neapolitan Lasagne con la Ricotta that are made for Carnival...
Baked Royal Dorade
This recipe for baked Royal Dorade (or bass) was kindly given me by Prince Philippe Poniatowski, who makes superb Vouvray at Le Clos Baudoin.
Millefoglie Recipe - Mille-Feuille
Millefoglie, which the French call Mille-Feuille, is one of the most delightful cakes around: Flaky puff pastry interlayered with rich crema chantilly (or chocolate, or both). Libidenous! Wonderful! The perfect birthday cake!
Classic Italian Pork Dishes
Classic Italian dishes : classic italian dishes grilled pork chops recipe for spare ribs pork dishes layer cakes
How To Salt Anchovies
The summer anchovy harvest was vital to Ligurian fishermen, who salted much of the catch to carry them through less abundant times. Here is how they salted (and salt) their anchovies. It's not difficult, and the results are superb.
Short Pasta with Salmon and Walnuts Recipe -...
Short Pasta with Salmon and Walnuts, Pasta Corta con Salmone e Noci: Pasta with smoked salmon is a classic romantic dish, but it can be a little boring. Here's a more interesting variation that also includes walnuts, presented by Beppe Bigazzi on an Italian cooking show.
Alfredo Sauce Recipe and Penne alla Fiesolana
Fiesolana Sauce is a smooth, creamy, cream sauce, and will work well over pasta or stuffed pasta, especially tortellini with a meat filling. If you modify the recipe slightly, you instead obtain an Alfredo sauce.
Don's Steak Pizzaiola Recipe - Easy Steak...
Steak with a tasty, zesty, tomatoey pizzaiola sauce, which Don kindly posted to the Italian cuisine forum.
Chestnuts: a rare treat, and versatile too....
Selecting and roasting Chestnuts
Canned Cherry Tomato Recipe - Pomodorini in Salsa
Cherry tomatoes are quite nice in a salad. But they're also nice canned, and when canned are a perfect ingredient to add to sauces, or even top a pizza.
How to Make a Classic Spicy Italian Penne...
Arrabbiata means angry, and if made right this pasta is spicy. Though the versions offered by the really cheap eateries in Rome rely primarily on garlic and hot pepper for their punch, some of the versions printed in cookbooks also call for onions.
DIY Wine Vinegar
Wine vinegar is easy to make, and this DIY recipe yields a homemade wine vinegar that's much tastier and cheaper than mass-produced, store-bought vinegars.
Pappardelle Pasta With Mushroom Sauce -...
Pappardelle alla Boscaiola: Pasta with a mushroom sauce is one of the most common Italian restaurant dishes, and you will encounter it throughout the Peninsula. This recipe calls for porcini, boletus edilis, and they are necessary to do it justice. Ideally, fresh porcini, but if you cannot find them you will have to make do: Purchase cultivated mushrooms and a 20-gram (1-ounce) packet of dried porcini...
How to Make Classic Eggplant Parmesan Like an...
Eggplant Parmesan, or Melanzane alla Parmigiana, is one of the great Neapolitan dishes that has spread across the globe. Eggplant Parmesan is a superb Neapolitan combination of tomatoes, eggplant, and cheese.
Bolognese Sauce, Sugo Alla Bolognese
You may grow old, even doddering, but if you know how to make a good meat sauce for pasta people will still beat a path to your door.
Palermo's classic Carnival pastry is delightful year round
Porcini Secchi
Dried porcini mushrooms are a great substitute for fresh porcini mushrooms, which are only available after a period of rain in autumn or winter. Page 45.
Cinghiale: Wild Boar
Italy has a vibrant wild boar population, and many recipes for preparing wild boar.
Casarecce: Simple, partially rolled (around the...
Casarecce: Simple, partially rolled (around the long axis) pappardelle, which will work well with chunky sauces, e.g eggplant and swordfish sauce. Page 39.
Bresaola is a finely sliced cured beef made by curing beef with spices and air drying it for several months. Page 2.
White Sauce Recipe - Besciamella - Bechamel...
According to Pellegrino Artusi, a good béchamel sauce, also known as white sauce, and a properly cooked meat sauce are the principal secrets of refined cooking.
Farro: Grain of the Legions
Farro fed the Legions, and is still one of the healthiest grains there is.
Home-Made Ricotta
How to make ricotta quickly and easily at home
Central Italian Cooking
Central Italy comprises four regions: Tuscany, Umbria, Le Marche, and Lazio, which hosts Rome, the Capital city. Quick overviews of the cuisines, and links to regional recipes.
Torrone Recipe - Nougat
Torrone, otherwise known as nougat, is a concoction made from honey, well-whipped egg whites, vanilla, and walnuts or almonds; it's an ancient sweet that requires considerable skill and care to make well, and in the past was also a great favorite among pastry chefs because it can be used as a building material for making fanciful cakes and other such delights. It's made throughout Italy, and Sicily's is especially renowned.
La Crostata
With jam, the flavors of home. With fruit, fit for a king!
Spaghetti with Clams in a White Sauce -...
Spaghetti with clams is the quintessential summer dish, and is amazingly refreshing on a hot day. Though you can use canned shellfish packed in their juice to make spaghetti alle vongole, live clams are far better. I prefer them in a white (tomato free) sauce because I find that tomatoes overshadow the flavor of the clams.
Chris's Wedding Soup Recipe
Hi, Kyle. Thought I'd contribute this wedding soup recipe. This is the one I grew up with, so it's of course the only one I can eat! I don't know if you need this at all, but I felt compelled to send it in. Best, Chris Castellani
Debunking the Top 10 Myths About Pasta
Clearing up the top 10 myths about pasta and how to cook it.
Creamed Spinach Dip Recipe - Purea Di Spinaci -...
Spinach might seem like an unlikely base for a dip, or even less likely as a party food, but this creamy spinach dip will be quite nice either during a party or as an antipasto. Use several different kinds of bread to give your guests variety to choose from.
Veal Saltimbocca alla Romana with Prosciutto...
Saltimbocca is one of the most classic Roman dishes. The name literally translates as hopinthemouth and is singularly appropriate -- you can never have too many of these veal cutlets with prosciutto and sage.
Classic Italian Cakes
Classic Italian dishes : classic italian dishes cassata alla siciliana panettone milano panettone ripieno layer cakes
About Potato Gnocchi
Gnocchi, Potato and Otherwise: Gnocchi are little dumplings, and though gocchi di patata -- potato gnocchi -- are the best known, there are many other tasty varieties of gnocchi.
Il Panettone Milanese - Milanese Panettone...
Milano's classic Christmas Cake!
How to Make Creamy Italian Pasta al Salmone...
Pasta with smoked salmon is one of the standard Italian Valentine’s Day recipes (the versions printed are often aimed at men). This particular pasta with smoked salmon recipe is based on a dish of pasta I enjoyed many years ago at Il Pantheon, a restaurant in Rome.
Cannelloni & Manicotti
Easy, delicious and elegant -- who could ask for more? From your Mining Co. Guide
Walnut Liqueur Recipe - Nocino
Nocino, or Walnut liqueur, is quite tasty and extremely delicate. It's also easy to make, and a great gift.
The Sformato
A Sformato is similar to a soufflé, though not as airy. Sformati are amazingly versatile, ranging from hearty comfort food to light vegetarian delights to tasty desserts.
Starting the Meal: Affettati Misti
A festive Italian meal generally begins with a variety of appetizers, which are known as antipasti -- a word that literally translates as before the pasto, or meal. These antipasti vary considerably from place to place in Italy, but they will often include a selection of cold cuts, which are known as affettati misti.
Cavolo Nero, or Black Leaf Kale:
Black Leaf Kale is the perfect winter cabbage, and the foundation of many heartwarming recipes. Page 2.
Starting the Meal: An Antipasto Misto
A festive Italian meal generally begins with a variety of appetizers, which are known as antipasti -- literally, before the meal. These antipasti vary considerably from place to place in Italy, but they will often include a selection of pickles and other firm vegetables, which are known as an antipasto misto.
Making Olive Oil the Traditional Way in Tuscany
With a modern olive press the olives enter at one end, and the oil emerges from the other. Traditional presses are more labor intensive, but when carefully used give wonderful, richly aromatic olive oils. Francesco Nardi's press is one of the oldest in Tuscany, and his extravirgin olive oil is superb.
Mostarda di Cremona Recipe
Mostarda di Cremona is what most Italians think of when they hear the word mostarda. It's voluptuous, and though something of an acquired taste (like fine whisky, for that matter), can be addictive. Since the fruit is not finely sliced, you should select pieces that look perfect.
How to Make Focaccia - An Illustrated Recipe
Focaccia, or schiacciata, is a simple savory flatbread that's a fine change of pace from regular bread. It's also a wonderful base for a sandwich, and, when made with a topping, is one of the finest nibble-foods there is.
Sott'Oli & Sotto Aceti: Capturing Summer...
Sott'oli & Sotto Aceti: Pickling vegetables or packing them in oil: preserving summer bounty for the winter months.
A Tuscan Antipasto Misto: What's On The Plate
Tuscan festive meals usually start with a mixture of antipasti, consisting of cold cuts, crostini, and generally something else, either pickles or cheese or perhaps both, and perhaps a sauce or two. If you're in a home the antipasti will be presented in platters, which people pass about, picking and choosing. In a restaurant this is obviously less practical, and you will likely get a plate of antipasti like the one shown here.
6 Underrated Italian Ingredients
An introduction to six underrated or little-known Italian ingredients that you should be using in your cooking.
The Pasta Shapes Glossary
Pasta comes in an astonishing variety of shapes, some of which are common throughout Italy, and some of which are limited to a particular region, or even town. There are also specialty shapes produced by individual pasta makers.
True Limoncello is made in Sorrento, from lemons whose trees overlook the Mediterranean. However, if you have good lemons where you live (I'd want organically grown here), you can get pretty close. And it's easy.
Mayonnaise Recipe - Maionese
People generally associate mayonnaise with the French, but mayonnaise is popular in Italy too. An easy mayonnaise recipe.
Italian Bread Soups
Italy has a rich, and varied tradition of bread soups, Here is a selection of Italian bread soup recipes, some for the summer and others for the winter.
Rice Pudding Recipe - Budino di Riso
Rice pudding is one of the most classic North Italian family type desserts -- quick, easy to make, and
How to Make Authentic Italian Bucatini...
Bucatini all'Amatriciana: This zesty pancetta and tomato sauce is commonly associated with Lazio and Rome, but is actually from the town of Amatrice, a part of the Abruzzo before Mussolini redrew the maps.
Luganega Sausages
Luganega sausages, one with fennel and the other with hot pepper. Page 16.
Neapolitan Lemon-Ricotta Cake for Carnevale
Recipe for a lemon and ricotta cake from Naples, traditionally made during Carnival time.
Lumaconi are large shells (lumaca means snail) that are quite nice when filled with a stuffing, in this case made from ricotta and ham. Page 32.
Anchovies by Another Name
Alici, or Anchovies, and an anchovy frittata. Page 6.
Zampone and Cotechino:
Zampone and Cotechino, stuffed pig's trotter and a sausage made from the same filling: both from Modena. Page 4.
How to Chop Onions, Garlic, and Herbs
Forget blenders and choppers! If the recipe doesn't call for a huge amount, it's quicker and easier to use a knife and a chopping board. And much faster to clean up after, too.
Cooking Pasta: How Much Water?
Given the crisis, people are looking for ways to save, and cooking pasta in less water is one possibility. It works, though the texture of the pasta cooked this way is less chewy than that cooked in the standard gallon of boiling water per pound of pasta.
Crespelle -- Crepes
Crespelle are the Italian equivalent of crepes. Though the preparation now has a certain ring of elegance to it, and crespelle appear often on upscale menus, in the past crespelle were considered poor people's food.
Italian Chopped Raw Beef Dish (Carne Cruda)
Carne Cruda is a raw beef dish Italian answer to steak tartare. Instead of an egg, this dish is served with lemon juice and olive oil.
Impruneta's Peposo: An Illustrated Recipe
Peposo is Impruneta's signature stew, a zesty, peppery beef stew that can easily match any chili out there. And it's easy to make, too!
A distinctive Puglian type of pasta, and some great sauces
Fig Marmalade, or Marmellata di Fichi
Fig Marmalade is truly summer captured and put in a jar.
6 Unspoken Italian Coffee Rules
Six rules for ordering and drinking coffee in Italy.
Bulb fennel is one of the great treats of winter.
Radicchio Rosso: The Marvel from Treviso
It makes winter worth getting excited over!
No-Fail Gnocchi Recipe - Easy Potato Gnocchi
Leatrice writes, I thought I'd send you a no-fail potato gnocchi recipe that's shockingly easy.
Got Cabbage?
Cabbage is the one of the most popular winter vegetables in Italy, and rightly so: It comes into season during the winter months, is inexpensive, is nutritious, is quite tasty, and is also versatile, working well in antipasti, soups, risotti, and main courses. Who could ask for more? Here is a quick rundown of favorite Italian cabbage recipes, starting with antipasti.
How to Cure Olives in Brine - Olive in Acqua
Fresh from the tree, olives are tremendously bitter, to the point that the people who originally went to the trouble of learning how to treat them must have been extraordinarily hungry. To draw out the bitterness you'll have to cure them, either in brine or in a solution of lye, or a combination of the two.
Favorite Red Sauces For Pasta:
If you visit an Italian market during the summer months, you will find tomatoes: Red shot with green for salads, cherry for salads and sauce, and... San Marzano, or plum tomatoes. Bins and bins of them, and people buy them to take home and make tomato sauce -- what's called pomarola in Italy, and Marinara in the US -- to enjoy straight off, and also to set aside for the winter months. Here are some of my favorite tomatoey pasta sauces.
Tripe's origins are humble, but it can be quite elegant
Lemon Ice Recipe
Lemon Ice: Aggie, who has kindly shared several recipes, says:
Acquacotta Recipe - Cooked Water - A Tuscan...
Acquacotta literally means cooked water, and is one of the classic soups of the Tuscan Maremma, eaten by herders and farmers. In short, peasant food.
Tuscan Wine Grape Pie Recipe - Schiacciata con...
Schiacciata con l'Uva, an astonishingly rich, sinfully juicy wine grape pie whose country roots are clearly revealed by the dough and the crunchiness of the grape seeds.
Trancia di Pesce Spada: Swordfish Steaks
Trancia di Pesce Spada: Swordfish Steaks, and a simple Sicilian recipe for grilled swordfish steaks. Page 59.
Spaghetti with Canned Tuna Recipe - Spaghetti...
Spaghetti with Tuna has a boring reputation. However, I first had this sauce during a geological field trip in the Apuan Alps: It had been raining for a week, and we were wet, cold, and miserable. When Marco was done feeding us, we were still wet, still cold, but satisfied. And I still make it when I'm out camping.

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