Browsing Tag

Lent

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 […]

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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 […]

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Pizza di Pasqua

Pizza di Pasqua

Today is Pasquetta (“little Easter”) in Italy, a national holiday and a day that Italians take to spend with family and friends to celebrate the beginning of spring. Italians have a saying they like to invoke at Easter and on Pasquetta: “Natale con i tuoi, Pasqua con chi vuoi.” (“Christmas with your family, Easter with whomever you want.”). The saying sounds much better in Italian (particularly because it rhymes) and it reflects the more casual nature of the day after Easter when Italians go on outings to parks or the countryside to enjoy a day of fun and leisure. Packing a picnic for a day spent […]

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Carnevale di Venezia

The Side Dish

Today is the first day of carnevale in Italy. For the next seventeen days, Italians will celebrate this festive period before the forty austere days of Lent begin. The two largest and most popular carnevali in Italy are the carnevale di Venezia and the carnevale di Viareggio (in Toscana). The carnevale di Venezia dates back to the 11th century. Revelers would celebrate for two months straight, and the tradition lasted until the 18th century, when it fell into decline. Carnevale wasn’t revived in Venice until 1979 and has continued with great success since then. The carnevale di Viareggio began in 1873 and is famous […]

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Fried Pastry Ribbons

fried pastry ribbons

During the past nine months that my blog was being re-designed, I spent a lot of time reading about Italian food. I cooked a lot too, perfecting recipes to share here, jotting down notes in my Moleskine notebook along the way. I discovered a serious love for researching the history and origins of Italian recipes. I’m not about to become a food historian anytime soon, but since there is still so much about Italian food that I don’t know, I’m having fun learning everything I can. Food history also takes shape in the form of our personal stories surrounding the recipes we make […]

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