Basics: How to Make Chicken Stock

For the next three days, I will be posting one “basics” recipe per day in preparation for Thanksgiving. These are my favorite recipes to make ahead, freeze and have on hand as the holiday season approaches. Today we are starting with one of my favorite, indispensable freezer staples: chicken stock. With Thanksgiving just around the corner, having a batch of homemade chicken stock ready to use will make life that much easier when it’s time to get cooking. And the day after Thanksgiving, put the bones of that big turkey to good use and replenish your freezer with homemade turkey stock. Win-win! […]

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Cauliflower Gratinata

I’ve always been picky about eating cauliflower. I don’t dislike it, but it hasn’t always been my favorite vegetable, either. When I was growing up, it was often served lessato–cooked in boiling, well-salted water and then dressed simply with olive oil and lemon juice (or red wine vinegar). It’s a classic Italian preparation for many vegetables, and I like it just fine, just not for cauliflower. I find cauliflower underwhelming in the flavor department, so I prefer this cruciferous vegetable prepared in a different and more flavorful way: as a classic gratinata. Identical to a French gratin, an Italian gratinata enrobes cooked vegetables […]

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Basics: How to Make Béchamel Sauce

During the next few months, I’m planning on posting several recipes that will be tagged “basics”. I decided to break them out into separate posts in order to give you more specific guidance on how to learn them since they are recipes that are used repeatedly in Italian cooking. Today, we are starting with one of my favorite basic recipes, béchamel sauce. As you can see from the name, the origin of this sauce is French and is believed to have been invented by Auguste Escoffier. Italians call this sauce balsamella or besciamella, and it’s a component in dishes such as lasagne, pasticcio, crocchette (croquettes), timballo, baked […]

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Marcella Hazan’s 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, practicing recipes to share here, jotting down notes in a 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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Welcome to the new Flavia’s Flavors!

welcome to the new Flavia's Flavors blog

Welcome to the new Flavia’s Flavors! I’m so excited to be blogging again and I’m thrilled with my newly re-designed blog. I want to extend a warm, Italian welcome to my long-time readers and new readers alike. If you were here in person, I would offer you a big bowl of homemade biscotti. Over the past nine months, I have been working with my friend Claudia of Fig. 2 Design to create a new look for Flavia’s Flavors. Since my goals were to re-brand my blog and create a new design, Claudia guided me through a series of detailed (and fun!) […]

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