Tag Archives: first courses

Pasta alla Norma

Tweet The combination of pasta and eggplant is exclusively associated with southern Italy and principally Sicily. This is a combination I have been using for years in recipes such as, melanzane e spaghetti torta, orzo stuffed peppers and marinated melanzane. As my recent trip to Sicily confirms, there are numerous versions of pasta alla norma, from Trapani […]

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Orzo with Roasted Shallots

Tweet This dish has three main ingredients and hardly needs a recipe, the ingredients, however, may need a bit of explanation. Orzo, is shaped like a grain of rice, is the Italian word for barley and is neither rice nor barley, orzo is pasta. A Shallot, although thought of as an elongated onion, is not […]

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Melanzane alla Parmigiana

Tweet Whenever my son, Joe, and I try a new Italian restaurant, the “one dish” that is a make-or-break decision to return, is eggplant Parmesan. The ingredients should compliment one another. The sauce must not overpower the dish nor the flavor of the eggplant be lost under a mound of cheese. An arugula salad with […]

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Stuffed Bell Pepper Soup

Tweet As a child, I remember my mother preparing stuffed bell peppers on numerous occasions. It’s one of those recipes that you can prepare in advance, tend to four children, manage the house and the dozens of other tasks a busy mom has to do on any given day and still serve a healthy, home-cooked […]

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Lemon-y Lentil & Chickpea Soup

Tweet Viglia Capodanno, New Year’s Eve, is celebrated throughout Italy with family and friends enjoying food and drink. The drink is bubbly (Prosecco) and the food is symbolic of wishes for a good year ahead. Lentils, with their coin-like shape, have traditionally been believed to ring in a prosperous new year. Auguri per un nuovo […]

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Pasta with Ricotta & Capers

Tweet Capers, the tiny, tangy buds of blossoming plants, have a permanent place in a Sicilian kitchen.Their piquant, briny flavors add personality to a variety of dishes, such as, veal picatta, summer spaghetti, tuna bruschette and of course Sicilian caponata. You’ll find capers in most markets either packed in salt or submerged in vinegar. I […]

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Spaghetti-Stuffed Eggplant

Tweet Pasta and eggplant are often enjoyed together, whether it’s the classic Pasta alla Norma, an eggplant and spaghetti pie or simply a plate of buccatini to accompany Melanzane alla Parmigiana. The inspiration for this dish came about because I wanted to serve a small plate of pasta but, in a fun way. The baby […]

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Roasted Brussels Sprouts Soup with Crostini

Tweet Who among us doesn’t love soup? It warms our bodies from the inside out on cold chilly days and it soothes our souls when we’re in need of a bit of comforting. Even if you are not a huge fan of Brussels sprouts, I encourage you to give this recipe a try. The tiny […]

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Farro with Roasted Butternut Squash & Fried Sage Leaves

Tweet Farro is an ancient grain with a delicious, nutty flavor and chewy texture. Butternut squash is a hard winter vegetable and when roasted has a sweet flavor similar to that of a yam or sweet potato. Now add fresh, fried sage leaves with its warm, subtle, earthy essence and you have a delicious dish […]

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Mediterranean Hummus

Tweet I didn’t grow up eating hummus. I first tasted this healthy, Egyptian spread while on a family vacation in Egypt. After settling into our hotel, the palatial Mena House, we headed for the terrace for a bite to eat. Gazing out at the breathtaking, so-close-we could-almost-touch-them, Great Pyramids of Giza, we felt blessed to […]

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