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I remember as a kid, my grandmother always had prune juice in the fridge. So throughout my life, I always associated prune juice with old people. And also for… you know…when you need a little extra help. In 2001, the California Prune Board pressured the Food and Drug Administration to change the name of prunes […]

Brunch, Dessert, Recipes

Prune Cake {Torta alla Prugne}

Prune Cake

In 1989, Roberta Molani opened one of the first cooking schools in Italy. Since then, Peccati di Gola, has grown from its original location in Mestre to include classes in thirteen locations throughout Italy. They have a substantial catering business and in Venice work with events related to the Bienniale, Venice Film Festival, weddings and other private events. […]

Dessert, Gluten Free, Recipes

Zabaione Chantilly Mousse from Peccati di Gola Cooking School


A meal is not complete in Italy without drinking a “digestivo”, or an after dinner drink at the end of the meal. A good Grappa, Amaro, Sambuca or Limoncello sipped after dinner is thought to help one’s food digest and settle the stomach. Everyone has their favorite and Limoncello, a lemon liqueur produced mainly in the […]

Dessert, Recipes

Biscotti al Limoncello (Limoncello Cookies)

The year I graduated from college and moved to New York, I had a fall ticket series to the New York City Opera with a work friend. I didn’t know much about opera and still don’t, but seeing the magnificent performances of Madame Butterfly and Tosca at Lincoln Center are forever etched in my memory. […]

Brunch, Dessert, Lake Garda, Recipes, Travel

La Torta Paradiso (Paradise Cake)~Maria Callas Style

Paradise Cake

  My trip through the Venetian Lagoon was phenomenal and the stunning sites and scenery will be forever etched in my mind. Especially the food. And of course the Prosecco. When I see something wonderful to eat, my heart beats just a little bit faster. In the case of the sensational Fritto Misto (fried squid and shrimp) served on the boat, it […]

Dessert, Recipes, Travel

Esse Buranei and Bussolà (Cookies from Burano)

Esse Buranei or Bussola

My mother went on vacation to California and she brought me back a lemon. That’s it…just a lemon…nothing else. And I was happy. Very, very happy.  She picked the lemon from a friend’s organic lemon tree in Berkeley, then packed it in her suitcase and schlepped it home. (I’m pretty sure she did some other […]

Dessert, Recipes

Iced Triple Lemon Biscotti (from Ciao Biscotti)

Lemon Biscotti

A few months ago, Monica sent me a bunch of Italian cooking magazines from 15+ years ago that her mom had lying around. They all had such beautiful pictures and I don’t care what anyone says, the photo is what entices me to make something, especially a recipe I’ve never made, nor seen before and most […]

Dessert, Recipes

Torta alla Melagrana (Pomegranate Cake)

Pomegranate Cake

As much as I love to cook, there’s something about baking that makes my heart sing. Maybe it’s the warming scent of hot dough in the oven that I find so comforting. Perhaps it’s that with baking there’s always plenty for everyone and I enjoy sharing and feeding others. Possibly it’s because I’m a numbers person […]

Books, Dessert, Recipes, Travel

Ciambella all’Arancia (Orange Scented Olive Oil Cake)

  Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday because it’s all about food. Wait, okay…I take that back – it’s about giving thanks FOR the food. And family. And health. And anything else that makes your heart swell on this truly American holiday. We eat and drink…that’s it! No gifts, no religion. I love cooking the meal […]

Dessert, Holidays, Recipes

Pumpkin Tiramisu (Tiramisù di Zucca)

Pumpkin Tiramisu

One of my favorite things about the Italian countryside is the abundance of small, family owned hotels and the food they serve. Each has its own personality, expertise and of course, recipes. Col delle Rane, an agriturismo 30 miles northwest of Venice is one of these special places. Owned by the Gallina family for three […]

Dessert, Recipes, Travel

Apple Cake (Torta di Mele) from Col delle Rane Agriturismo

Apple Cake

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