Focaccia Veneta

Cucina Conversations

Welcome to the April edition of Cucina Conversations! We’re sharing our recipes a little early this month so you can see what we have cooked and baked for our upcoming Easter celebrations. Like Christmas, Easter is one of my favorite holidays of the year for both its religious significance and the food traditions. I am thoroughly enjoying researching and learning the recipes of my northern Italian heritage, so for this month’s post I’m sharing a recipe for focaccia veneta, a yeasted sweet bread typical to the region of the Veneto. In the Venetian dialect, this bread is known as fugassa or fugassin. This is a […]

READ MORE

Spinach Torta Rustica

Cucina Conversations

Welcome to the March edition of Cucina Conversations! Last month, we shared indulgent recipes to celebrate during the weeks of carnevale. This month, the bloggers of Cucina Conversations are bringing you recipes from Italy’s cucina magra (the lean kitchen), vegetarian recipes that can be eaten during the current period of la quaresima, the forty days of Lent. One of the important aspects of this period in the Christian liturgical calendar is adherence to certain dietary rules which include fasting and abstaining from eating meat every Friday of Lent (only fish is allowed). My contribution for this month’s topic is a spinach torta rustica (rustic spinach pie), which in Italian […]

READ MORE

Frittelle di Zucchine

frittelle di zucchine

A few weekends ago, we had our good friends Susie and David over for dinner. To accompany a few glasses of refreshing Aperol spritz’s, I made these frittelle di zucchine (zucchini fritters) for our appetizer. They are on heavy rotation in my kitchen for a variety of reasons: I can always find beautiful zucchine at the grocery store, and they are delicious left over and make a great snack or light lunch. The recipe for these frittelle comes from Lidia Bastianich’s newest cookbook, Lidia’s Mastering the Art of Italian Cuisine. You can never go wrong with any of Lidia’s recipes. Frittelle are part of Italy’s fritto misto (mixed fry) in which […]

READ MORE

Frìtole Veneziane

Cucina Conversations

Buon martedì grasso and welcome to the February edition of Cucina Conversations! Today is Fat Tuesday, the last day for Christians worldwide to indulge before the lean forty days of Lent. Martedì grasso is also the final day of carnevale season. This month, the bloggers of Cucina Conversations are telling you about the variety of traditional foods prepared and eaten during the three weeks of carnevale. To commemorate my recent trip to the Veneto and my northern Italian heritage, I made frìtole veneziane–known in the Venetian dialect as frìtoe venessiane– a yeasted sweet fritter laced with liquor-soaked raisins and fragrant pine nuts, and coated abundantly in granulated sugar. Frìtole are considered an institution of the carnevale […]

READ MORE

Occhi di Bue

occhi di bue

Happy Valentine’s Day! To celebrate, I made occhi di bue, one of my favorite Italian cookies. They are a simple sandwich-style cookie made of pasta frolla typically cut into a circle with a thin slip of fruit preserves, fruit curd, or Nutella spread in between. The top half of every cookie has a smaller circle cut out so the filling is visible. Every Italian pasticceria (pastry shop) or biscottificio (cookie shop) will almost always have occhi di bue behind their impeccably clean glass counters, lined with tray after tray of beautifully presented cookies, crostate, cakes, and pastries. We spent the last day of our […]

READ MORE