“Luuuucy, I’m hoooome.” To me, Ricky Ricardo was ethnic; I was just a guy from New Jersey. (Ok, so maybe I sported a gold cross, drove a Firebird, had big hair, and my father’s name was Mario, but hey, I wore Polo shirts!) So, you can imagine the shock I experienced in college when my very blonde date ordered Spaghetti Bolognese and then picked up her knife and started to cut. Cringing inside, but charming… [Read More]
The word probably comes from a combination of the Mayan chocol and the Axtec word cacahuatl. The Spanish conquistadors didn’t like the idea of drinking a warm brown beverage that sounded like caca, so they had the good sense to blend the words into the name “chocolate.” And who doesn’t enjoy a nice chocolate every now and then? Hence the problem: the world now eats more cocoa than it can grow. Half of the world’s… [Read More]
Dear President Obama, Rudy Giuliani is asking whether you love America. But all I really want to know is whether you love cannelloni. These delicious tubes of pasta, stuffed with mozzarella, ricotta, spinach and/or ground meat, covered with a tomato or béchamel sauce, and then baked to perfection. Do you believe in cannelloni? That’s my question. Of course, the red and blue states of Italy view cannelloni differently. In and around Naples, for example, you… [Read More]
My 10-year-old daughter recently asked me if it was mean to eat meat. Today’s recipe really got me thinking about that question. Ribs do seem very personal, going all the way back to Adam and Eve. Be they pork or beef, smothered in BBQ sauce or braised in a ragu, ribs start off closest to the beating heart. This was my response to her, “I don’t know. Is it mean for a shark to eat… [Read More]
Darwin would be proud of lasagna. Talk about the power of evolution and global contribution. We can start 2,000 years ago in ancient Rome, with lagana, arguably the world’s first sheet of fresh pasta. The word evolved into lasagna, as did the pasta itself, and as did the way of preparing it. Meanwhile, over the centuries tomatoes migrated to Italy from the Americas via the explorers and black pepper came from the Far East, probably… [Read More]
Istrian pork and sauerkraut dish.