I wrote a post about how to make your own Italian-style hot chocolate at home. Yummy, soul soothing and totally satisfying ganache…oh…I mean hot chocolate. But let’s face it, the Italian version IS basically like drinking a cup of ganache. It is rich and thick and to “drink” it, you need a spoon. Read More

It has been particularly cold in these last days of February. Rome even got a dusting of powdered sugar last night and the city woke up to a snow covered Colosseum. So what is the best way to enjoy these cold, cozy days?  With a cup of hot chocolate of course! ITALIAN hot chocolate that is. Italian hot chocolate is more like a dessert all by itself. It is has a thicker consistency than its American cousin and is more like drinking chocolate ganache than warmed up chocolate milk.

There is a boxed hot chocolate available in Italy, and it is called Ciobar. It kind of gets a bad rap here as something processed and disgusting, but having a look at the ingredients, they look similar to my recipe. Here they are:

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I have been pretty much MIA all summer long.  Time just flies so fast.  But while there is still a little of summer left, there is just enough time to make this easy zucchini frittata.   Read More

In Italy, we often have lots of leftover panettone after Christmas.  The question is – what to do with it all? Read More


A few weeks ago, we had a big birthday celebration for my son with lots of his friends.   So how exactly do you keep a bunch of 10-year-old Italian boys happy at a birthday party?  With pizzette of course!  These mini pizzas will make just about anyone happy – – adults included.   Read More


Recipe – Homemade Nutella – I came across a recipe in an Italian cooking magazine for homemade Nutella.  I was so excited about making the candy bar in a jar on my own! Read More

Polpette di Carne are just meatballs.  AGAIN the Italians can make something so crude sounding in English sound so fab in their language.  Anyway, these polpette are often served with a tomato sauce, but in my house, they are fried up and served as is, usually with a side salad – after the pasta of course.  Speaking of which, Italians do not eat spaghetti with meatballs.  They don’t mix the two.  More on this subject can be found  in this excellent article from the Smithsonian www.smithsonianmag.com.  Make sure to scroll down to the end of the page to have a look at one of the sweetest scenes from the Disney movie, “Lady and the Tramp.”


24 ounces ground beef

6 ounces Italian sausage (casing removed)

2 cloves garlic minced

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

1/2 cup breadcrumbs

3/4 cup Pecorino or Parmesan cheese

1/4 cup heavy cream

1 egg yolk



oil for frying


1.  In a large bowl, mix ground beef and sausage.

2.  Add garlic, parsley,  breadcrumbs and cheese.  Mix by hand until all ingredients are incorporated.

3.  Add cream, egg, salt and pepper working again by hand and making sure all ingredients are mixed.

4.  Form meatballs into the shape of a  somewhat flattened tennis ball.

5.  In a large skillet, heat cooking oil on medium-high heat.  Add the meatballs, working in batches if necessary, cook for about 4-5 minutes on each side. Lower heat to medium and cook until golden, about another 5-8 minutes.

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Italian Meatball Recipe - How to Make Polpette

So when I post recipes, I always include a photo of the finished product.  Usually something like this photo above.  And sometimes I even include pics of how to prepare the recipe with a set of photos similar to the group below.  But the reality? Just take a look at the next three photos. Read More

Here is an “Italy, so hello to America” recipe.  A true crostata is NOT made with pie crust.  The crust is almost the same, but there will be eggs added to the mix and sometimes even vanilla.  I love, love, love pie crust, so I make mine with pie crust. Read More

With eggplant in season, take advantage of the period and prepare this classic dish that is always a crowd pleaser:  eggplant parmesan otherwise known as parmigiana di melanzane, or melanzane alla parmigiana or simply:  parmigiana.   Read More

So easy, so delicious and no oven involved! I can’t really bake so of course the tiramisu is one of my go-to desserts. I did a little research to see where this “classic” Italian dessert originated from and as it turns out, it is not so classic after all.

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In Italy, “La Bella Figura” does not completely relate to having a beautiful body or figure, but it is somewhat linked.  La Bella Figura is an approach to life – a philosophy.   Read More