Homemade Giardiniera

Frankantipasti, Preserves, reference25 Comments

There are many ways in Italian cookery to put up food, relics of the days before refrigeration and freezing and commercial processing. There is straight up canning, of course. I can remember Angelina’s yearly day-long ritual of putting up summer tomatoes for the winter. The mason jars nearly filled one … Read More

Sorbetto di limone (Lemon Sorbet)

Frankdessert, summer28 Comments

Sorbetto di limone

Along with gelato, sorbetto is *the* classic Italian frozen dessert. And perhaps the most basic. Sorbetto di limone is essentially frozen lemonade: Simple syrup is made by simmering sugar and water together, to which lemon zest is added and allowed to infuse its flavor. When this flavored syrup cools completely, it … Read More

Homemade Passata di pomodoro: Step by step

Frankreference50 Comments

Passata di pomodoro (or passata for short) is the multi-purpose tomato purée that every aspiring Italian cook should learn how to make. Fortunately, it’s really quick and easy, but you do need one special piece of equipment: a food mill. The method is simplicity itself: You take ripe tomatoes, simmer them just long … Read More

How to Slice a Bell Pepper

Frankreference12 Comments

How to slice a bell pepper

If you’re like me, you probably slice peppers in half lengthwise through the core, and proceed to trim out the seed core from each half (which inevitably send seeds flying around) and then slice up the flesh, trimming off the bitter pith attached to the ridges along the way. Well, if you’re … Read More

Homemade Potato Gnocchi

Frankgnocchi, primi piatti, reference38 Comments

Potato gnocchi are one of the easier types of ‘pasta’ to make at home and are most definitely worth the effort. The mini-hockey pucks that are sold commercially are, to put it bluntly, hardly worth eating—especially after you’ve tried the real thing. The best homemade potato gnocchi are as light and … Read More

A Beginner’s Guide to Authentic Italian Food

Frankreference17 Comments

Welcome to our three part beginner’s guide to authentic Italian food! Here’s what you’ll find here: Part I: The Varieties of Italian Cooking This post walks you through the principal types of Italian cooking you are likely to encounter from true Italian food, the kind they make in Italy, to … Read More

Homemade Mayonnaise, the Italian Way

Frankreference, sauces13 Comments

Homemade Mayonnaise, the Italian Way

Mayonnaise may have been invented by the Spanish and popularized by the French, but Italians make maionese, too. The Italian method for homemade mayonnaise is not very different from elsewhere, but, not surprisingly, it is made either partially or entirely with olive oil (as was the original Spanish version) and is kept … 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