Carabaccia (Tuscan Onion Soup)

Frankprimi piatti, Soups, Toscana, Winter31 Comments

Carabaccia

Carabaccia is an ancient Tuscan onion soup, going back to the Renaissance. They say it was a favorite of Leonardo da Vinci—and that, as for so many other classic dishes,  the recipe was brought by Catarina de’  Medici to France, where it evolved into the soupe à l’oignon we all know and love today. You … Read More

Peposo (Peppery Tuscan Beef Stew)

Franksecondi piatti, Toscana39 Comments

Peposo (Tuscan Beef Stew)

This Tuscan beef stew has a long history. The story goes that it was invented by the furnace workers (fornaciai) who baked the terracotta tiles for the Brunelleschi’s famous Duomo in Florence. They mixed roughly cut up beef shank, salt, lots of black pepper and red wine—Chianti, of course—in terracotta … Read More

Trippa con patate (Tripe and potatoes)

Franksecondi piatti, Toscana11 Comments

Tripe and potatoes

Tripe is one of the most misunderstood parts of the cow. Although classified as an organ meat—part of the famous quinto quarto as the Romans say—well-cooked tripe has its own unique mild and subtle flavor, not at all like other organ meats such as liver or kidneys. Even for the … Read More

Focaccia al rosmarino (Rosemary Flat Bread)

Franksnack, Toscana20 Comments

Focaccia al rosmarino

Focaccia is a great snack you can make starting with a basic pizza dough, whether homemade or store-bought: spread it out on a cookie sheet or shallow rectangular baking pan, poke it all over with your fingers, then top with rosemary, sale grosso, pepper and a good drizzle of olive … Read More

Tomato Sauce 101

FrankCampania, pasta, primi piatti, reference, sauces, Toscana54 Comments

Tomato Sauce 101

I’m all for convenience when it actually makes life simpler, but it’s always been a mystery to me why people buy those jars of wretched “spaghetti sauce” that line our supermarket shelves when you can make real tomato sauce with only a tiny bit more time and effort. I suspect … Read More

Zuppa inglese (Italian Trifle)

Frankdessert, Emilia-Romagna, Toscana40 Comments

Zuppa inglese (Italian Trifle)

Zuppa inglese, literally “English soup”, is actually neither English nor a soup. It is a classic Italian dessert, but the name is apt nevertheless. Its texture is very reminiscent of the bread-thickened soups so typical of the cookery of central Italy, only sweet and cool rather than savory and hot—a … Read More

Zuppa di porri (Tuscan Leek Soup)

FrankFall, primi piatti, Soups, Toscana, Winter21 Comments

Tuscan Leek Soup

‘Tis the season for soups! When the temperatures dive, there is simply nothing that takes the chill off like soup. The wonderful thing about soups is their enormous variety: they can be thick and stick-to-the-ribs, whole meals in themselves, or they can be light, even austere, just enough to whet … Read More

La ribollita (Tuscan Minestrone)

Frankprimi piatti, Soups, Toscana13 Comments

Ribollita

We’ve already gone over the basic recipe for minestrone on this blog. Once you’ve mastered that, it is a lot of fun to explore the many varieties of minestrone from all over Lo Stivale (meaning ‘the boot’ one of the many nicknames Italians give to their country). Perhaps the most delicious … Read More