Cucina Conversations: the Italian aperitivo

Ritual: (noun) ‘a series of actions or type of behaviour regularly and invariably followed by someone’; (adjective) (of an action) ‘arising from convention or habit’. Italy is home to many of these, especially regarding food…

Bonet: crème caramel’s Piedmontese cousin

In The Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson wrote, “In the latter part of the 20th century, crème caramel occupied an excessively large amount of territory in European restaurant dessert menus. This was probably due…

Gelato al fior di latte

It’s that time of year again. There’s no breeze and all that cobblestone and concrete are conspiring to retain the heat, day in, day out. With no relief from the scorching temperatures, all I want…

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…

La focaccia della befana

In Italy, the festive season does not end with New Year celebrations. So, if you’re hoping that I’ll be posting about  something a little bit lighter after all those deep fried zeppole I posted about…

A Morning at the Markets

If you have to do your shopping here on a Saturday, it is best to get in early. The often huge throngs of people surrounding the bancarelle (stalls) at the local markets can be quite…