Cucina Conversations: castagnaccio for Ognissanti

That time of year is upon us again. It’s the season Giacomo Castelvetro, Inquisition refugee and author of the 1614 manuscript The Fruit, Herbs and Vegetables of Italy, described as per la bocca (‘for tasting’)….

Bagnet verd (Piedmontese green sauce)

I have a confession to make. Unless I’m baking or recipe-testing for this blog, I don’t always take out my kitchen scales to check how much an ingredient weighs. And I don’t think I am…

My Kitchen Shelf: Giuseppe Chioni’s Arte culinaria

After Italy’s defeat at Caporetto by the German and Austro-Hungarian armies in October 1917, over three hundred thousand Italian soldiers were taken prisoner. The Italian government and military forces, embarrassed by how easily the weaknesses…

Saturday tripe

I was a very picky eater growing up. There were so many things that I wouldn’t touch then. Fish (with the rather curious exception of fish fingers and canned tuna), onions, butter, anything leafy and…

Crostata di marmellata

My intention was actually to post about a rich ricotta-filled baked good for Easter. Think Neapolitan pastiera, Sicilian cassata or Giovanni Goria’s crostata di seirass[i]. The resolve to make these wonderfully elaborate sweets disappeared fairly…

Thursday gnocchi…

There’s an old Roman saying that goes giovedì gnocchi, venerdì pesce, sabato trippa (‘Thursday gnocchi, Friday fish, Saturday tripe’). Most Roman eateries – from tavole calde to Michelin-starred fine dining establishments – continue to abide…

Lettuces, Rags and Lies for Carnival

“Vuoi una bugia? (Do you want a lie?)” my flatmate asked me one February evening, indicating a platter with some flat, sugar-coated fritters on them. “A lie?” I replied puzzledly. I had arrived in Turin…