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Pesto genovese (Genoese Basil Sauce)

I’m old enough to remember when pesto genovese, the Genoese basil sauce, was a novelty in the US. These days everyone knows about pesto, to the point where it’s become a stand-by, especially in the summer when fresh basil is everywhere. Truth be told, though, as common as it is, pesto is rarely well made in […]

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Carbonara vegetariana (Vegetarian Carbonara)

As a longtime resident of Rome, carbonara is one of my very favorite pastas, but in the warmer weather it can be a bit heavy. One way to lighten things up is to substitute the pancetta (Italian bacon) with a vegetable, typically zucchini, which has a natural affinity for eggs, as we’ve seen before in our […]

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Lasagne agli asparagi (Asparagus Lasagna)

  A good dish of lasagna is one of the most satisfying meals I can imagine. But, to be honest, a dish of classic lasagne alla bolognese can be a bit on the heavy side, especially as the weather gets warmer. That’s the beauty of vegetarian lasagne; if not exactly dietetic, they are lighter than […]

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Spaghetti alla carbonara

My grandmother Angelina never made it, as far as I can recall, but as a long-time resident of Rome I have a great fondness for la carbonara, one of the iconic dishes of Roman cooking. Together with bucatini all’amatriciana, you’ll find it on just about every menu in town. And it’s a popular dish to […]

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Bucatini all’amatriciana

It could be said that bucatini all’amatricana and spaghetti alla carbonara are the ‘Romulus and Remus‘ of Roman cooking. No two dishes typify the local cuisine better than these two yet, like the two founding brothers of the Eternal City, neither actually comes from the city of Rome itself. L’amatriciana, as the name suggests, comes […]

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Pasta con la ricotta (Pasta with Ricotta Cheese)

Pasta and ricotta make for a perfect impromptu meal or weekend dinner. The mellow flavor combination of tomato, ricotta and a bit of parmesan cheese is vaguely reminiscent of southern-style lasagna. But, like many simple pasta dishes, it’ll be done in less than 30 minutes—the time it takes to bring the water to the boil […]

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Turkey Tetrazzini

The Tetrazzini family of dishes is hard to classify. Despite being a kind of baked pasta dish with an Italian name, it is most definitely not Italian. In fact, it’s not really even Italian-American, if you define that term as meaning the cooking of the Italian diaspora in America. At the end of the day, […]

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