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Cavolfiore in salsa di acciughe (Cauliflower in Anchovy Sauce)

A quick note with a recipe for what is probably the most versatile of winter vegetables: cauliflower. It lends itself to practically every cooking technique you can think of: steaming, braising, boiling, frying, baking, roasting… And its mild flavor lends itself to pairing with all sorts of other foods and sauces. Here is one of […]

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Torta di porri (Leek Pie)

The Florentine chef and food historian Giuliano Bugialli is one of my favorite Italian cookbook authors, but he is relatively little known, particularly as compared with his near contemporary Marcella Hazan. Bugialli produced a number of wonderful cookbooks, some beautifully illustrated, some not, but all grounded in solid scholarship and a deep knowledge of his […]

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Carote marinate (Marinated Carrots)

Carote marinate are beautiful to look at and wonderfully versatile.  In season year ’round, they serve equally well as an antipasto or side dish, or as part of a buffet spread. Best of all, they take almost no effort to make and can—indeed, should—be made ahead of time. If you ask me, every cook should […]

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A Neapolitan Christmas: Insalata di rinforzo (Cauliflower and Pickled Vegetable Salad)

This zesty cauliflower salad is a fixture on family tables in Naples during the Christmas season.  The salad is called rinforzo—’reinforcement’—is because it was customary in the old days to make a first batch as an antipasto on Christmas Eve and to keep on ‘reinforcing’ it with more cauliflower and condiments over the course of the holiday […]

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A Neapolitan Christmas: Capitone fritto (Fried Eel)

It wouldn’t be Christmas Eve without fish, and capitone, or eel is one of the most popular choices in Italy, where the tradition goes back for millennia. While eel is almost unheard of in the US outside sushi circles, there’s a good reason for its popularity: eel has a meaty flavor and firm texture that even […]

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Insalata russa (Russian Salad)

Russian Salad, known in Russian as Салат Оливье or Salad Olivier, was once a common feature on festive tables all over the world. The Italian version of this international dish is distinguished by the use of Italian-style mayonnaise made with fruity olive oil. This venerable dish seems to have gone out of fashion, perhaps because of […]

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Barchette di radicchio (Manu’s Radicchio “Boats” Filled with Mascarpone, Gorgonzola and Glazed Walnuts)

It will only be a quick post this busy holiday weekend, dear readers, but I didn’t want to let too much time pass without making good on my promise to prepare at least one dish from fellow blogger Manuela Zangara’s holiday cookbook. My choice, her recipe for these pretty radicchio “boats”, typifies the kind of […]

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