La dolce vita – Cannoli!

Ok. Who doesn’t love cannoli? Crispy goodness filled with sweet (but not too sweet) awesomeness. But sometimes (or most times) when you buy them in a bakery or a store the crispiness has faded into sogginess and the filling is overly sweet and they don’t have the flavor you want… So? Make them at home!! … Continue reading

Braised Lamb with Risotto alla Milanese

After an amazing amount of research into a good Secondo Piatto I found this recipe for Braised Lamb with juniper berries, fennel, and sage. Every single ingredient in this dish made me think of Rome. I knew it would be perfect – and what better accompaniment than a risotto? We have lots of saffron and … Continue reading

Spaghetti Carbonara a la Pisciapiano

This was the first dish we KNEW had to be on the menu for the Holiday Italiano meal (or Cena Magnifica according to the Boy’s riddle menu! So cute!). Pisciapiano was the Boy’s father’s favorite restaurant in Rome and a huge part of his experience there in high school. We went there on our trip … Continue reading

Holiday Italiano!

For Christmas, the Boy’s dad asked for a gift that wouldn’t add to all of the stuff in their house, so we thought what better than a meal that would transport him back one of his favorite places – Rome!! So we brainstormed and came up with a four course menu we hoped would make … Continue reading

Real, slow cooked Ragu and fresh pasta!

That’s right – the Boy got me a pasta machine! AND cooked all day yesterday for my late birthday dinner with some friends making the most delicious ragu I’ve ever tasted. Ever. (AND got me a culinary torch with a butane refill). Is he the best or what?! Read on for this ultimate ragu’s recipe … Continue reading

Two kinds of gnocchi, two ways

Did you know different regions of Italy have different definitions of gnocchi? Neither did I…but I suppose we should have known considering the variations on basic sauces and pasta dishes around the country as well as different takes on wine, cheeses, and pastry. But still! Cool discovery! I decided to make the traditional gnocchi after … Continue reading

Spinach Ravioli with Sage Butter Sauce

Since making my first fresh pasta in Rome I’ve been wanting to make fresh ravioli (not mention the fact that I haven’t had ravioli in a while…). I invited over Miss Em and we worked out our girly aggression on rolling out this hefty pasta dough by hand (still no pasta machine – but my … Continue reading

Secondo piatto: Parmigiana di melanzana – Eggplant parmesan

This is the most exquisite eggplant parmesan I have ever had in my life. It was also the first eggplant parmesan la Mamma has ever like in her entire life. It is done in the Sicilian way with the eggplant sliced very thin and flash fried without any breading what-so-ever. It’s then just combined with … Continue reading

Vegetarian Primo Piatto – Tagliolini con melanzana e pomodoro

We had one vegetarian in our class, so Chef Andrea included this variation. Go ahead and use the same recipe for the pasta as the Duck Ragù entry and follow the recipe for the sauce! Maybe don’t pair it with the Eggplant parmesan because it would be so much eggplant… Read on for the recipe … Continue reading

Primo piatto: Tagliolini al ragù di Anatra – Homemade tagliolini with white duck ragù

This was probably the most exciting course for me because…*drumroll*…we got to make FRESH PASTA! The tagliolini is just a slimmer version of a fettucini and according to Chef Andrea is the perfect heft to hold the ragù. A white ragù is just like a normal ragù without the tomatoes, and this specific one could … Continue reading

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