Mangia Bene!

Lasagna Summer Salad

Lasagna Summer Salad

This salad has the taste of summer written all over it! Vine-ripened, sweet, juicy tomatoes, fresh ricotta and a simple light basil pesto transform the traditional hearty lasagna. Okay, it’s not really lasagna but, I did use lasagna noodles. The pasta is layered with mozzarella and ricotta (same as lasagna) but, in place of the […]

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Peach Bellini

Venice, Italy, considered by many to be one of the most romantic cities in the world and a favorite honeymoon destination, is where my husband, Jack and I spent a very special anniversary. The typical crowds of the tourist season were long gone, the streets were practically deserted and even the neighborhood bars and cafes […]

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Peach & Prosciutto Bruschetta

  My inspiration for this bruschetta (singular) comes from the “small bites” of Italy, known as merenda. The nourishing small meals are defined by the season and since July is the season for peaches, it seemed a good place to start. Last weekend we took a drive to our local U-Pick Farm and we picked […]

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Lemon Honey Vinaigrette

This recipe is a versatile, slightly sweet, yet tart dressing that compliments a variety of fresh fruits and leafy greens. For a heartier meal, toss spring greens with the vinaigrette, place a piece of grilled salmon on top and spoon additional dressing over the salmon. Garnish with lemon slices.       Ingredients: 1/4 cup […]

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Panzanella Salad

Italians waste nothing … not even stale bread! Bread salad is a perfect example of la cucina povera, peasant food. Only a few humble ingredients are needed to turn yesterday’s bread into a satisfying meal. Use summer’s juiciest, vine-ripened tomatoes, a chewy, rustic, country bread, a good red wine vinegar and your best fruity, robust […]

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Light Basil Pesto

Pesto is an Italian sauce that is a specialty of Genoa, Italy. It is never cooked (or heated for that matter) and is made with fresh basil, extra-virgin olive oil, garlic, pine nuts and cheese. Pesto’s primary purpose (and only purpose if you ask a Genovese) is to sauce pasta. Purists will tell you the […]

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Cannoli Ice Cream Pie

A thin shell of crispy, delicate pastry dough, fried to a golden perfection and then stuffed with a creamy ricotta filling is a Sicilian specialty. Cannoli can be found all over the island and enjoyed any time of the year. Not feeling like making the shells and wanting a dessert to beat the Arizona heat, […]

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Fennel Salad with Creamy Dressing

Called finocchio in Italian, fennel has a mild, sweet aroma and a taste reminiscent of black licorice. Quite often it is simply eaten raw, thinly sliced with a bit of sea salt. The crunchy bite of fennel pairs perfectly with the creamy dressing for this salad (which can also be used to make coleslaw to […]

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Toasted Coconut Biscotti

Toasted Coconut Biscotti

This rich, buttery, coconut cookie recipe was inspired by a family wedding that took place in Kauai this past February. Just as toasting nuts brings out their flavor, the same is true when toasting coconut, while also adding a distinctive crunchy texture. Paired with budino di ricotta, a luscious cold pudding, this would make an […]

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Arugula Salad with Warm Balsamic Dressing

Whether you call it arugula, rucola or rocket, this wild peppery plant has grown in the Mediterranean since Roman times. Rucola, the Italian name, is an edible herb and is as common place to Italians as basil and parsley. This nutritious green, high in vitamin-K and folic acid, can be used in appetizers, such as […]

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