A Ciao Biscotti Giveaway!


[Big hat tip to photographer Antonis Achilleos and the design team at Chronicle Books for the book images]

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UPDATE: First, I want to thank all of you who commented and shared your stories. You’ll never know how much it meant to me to read them. Truly a moving collection, and so many wonderful sweet and bittersweet memories. There is no way I could have chosen a winner, so I passed the duty on to my daughter. And the winner is…Joyce Q, who wrote about her vacation in Riomaggiore. My daughter loved the story and the way it was written. So Joyce, CONGRATULATIONS, and please contact me through the site here so Fantes and I can send you your loot!

Thanks again to all who participated. Now go bake some biscotti!

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Ever since I started working on my first cookbook, more than a decade ago, I’ve made a promise to treat myself to a massage upon publication. Six books later, I still haven’t gotten one.

It is finally dawning on me that I may not actually want a massage. But I do want to celebrate the release of Ciao Biscotti, so let’s do something we can all enjoy:


Ciao Biscotti_p10

I’m teaming up with the generous folks at Fante’s Kitchen Shop, in Philadelphia ~ where, incidentally, I’ll be doing a book signing on March 7. We’re giving away one copy of Ciao Biscotti, and, to go with it, one biscotti baking pan, which I wrote about recently.

Entering is easy: Leave a comment telling me something sweet about Italy. It can be a description of your favorite biscotti or Italian dolce; it can be a sweet ~ or bittersweet ~ memory of a trip to Italy. Do you have a favorite Italian restaurant or neighborhood Italian deli? Tell me about your favorite Italian novelist or poet. If you like, share a link to an Italian cookie or dessert recipe on your own blog.

Ciao Biscotti_p20

Be sure to enter your email address (which will not be posted) so I can contact you if you are the winner. A winner will be chosen at random by one of my kids, if I can corral one long enough to complete the task. The winner will be announced on the blog on Thursday, March 5, 2015, so please check this post for an update. The winner must contact me by the end of Thursday, March 12, 2015, or the book will go to a randomly chosen runner up.

If you win and happen to be in the vicinity of Fante’s on Saturday, March 7, you are welcome to pick up your loot right at the store and I’ll happily sign the book for you.

I’ll be at Fante’s from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. There will be samples!

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Abruzzo Culinary Tour September 2015: Eight days of la dolce vita, with cooking classes, epic meals, great wine, cultural exploration and adventure in the Italian countryside. Join us!

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130 Responses to A Ciao Biscotti Giveaway!

  1. Rosa Jeanne Mayland February 27, 2015 at 8:22 am #

    A wonderful looking book.

    I love Italian biscotti. They taste heavenly and are so uplifting.



  2. Paula Francese February 27, 2015 at 9:07 am #

    I have a wonderful memory of spending the day with Domenica in Sulmona during the very first Abruzzo Culinary Tour in September 2014. We went to the farmer’s market to pick up the ingredients for a luncheon menu that Domenica created. What a fantastic time we had cooking with her in a local hotel kitchen, taking photos, laughing a lot and sitting down to an elegantly set table to share the fruits of our labor. Thanks for the many memorable moments Domenica—such a wonderful trip! Good luck with your latest book.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 1:50 pm #

      Just thinking about it makes me smile, Paula. Thank you for being part of our inaugural tour.

  3. lisa February 27, 2015 at 9:35 am #

    I’ve never been to Italy, but I frequently dream of visiting, usually when I am cooking from my favorite Culinary Institute of America -Italian Cooking. It looks like your book of biscotti treats would be the PERFECT complement to my cookbook, and bring me just that much closer to feeling like I was actually already in Italy! Thanks for the chance to participate!

  4. Itzia February 27, 2015 at 9:40 am #

    There’s a great Italian restaurant in Spanish Flats, CA near Lake Berryessa that’s great. It’s such a treat to get to go there

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 1:51 pm #

      Wish I would get to CA more often, Itzia. I will keep it in mind for sure.

  5. Elvira February 27, 2015 at 9:54 am #

    I can’t make it to Fante but what I can do, is send you a “sweet” hello from Italy and my congratulations for the book release! In bocca al lupo <3

  6. cookingmylife February 27, 2015 at 10:01 am #

    We first went to Italy, as a couple, in 2008 on a 3 major cities tour. Venice, Florence, Rome. But in between those 3 cities, we stopped in Padua and Orvieto. While we have been back to Italy several times since and visited other cities, our <3 was truly smitten by Orvieto. Since that first visit, we twice rented the same Orvieto apartment and are thinking of going again! Sweet sweet memories!

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 1:53 pm #

      Orvieto is lovely, though I haven’t been there in many years. It’s good to get off the beaten path, isn’t is…

    • Lea August 3, 2015 at 1:10 pm #

      Hi , we were in Italy two yrs ago on a tour and we went to the Adriatic coastal towns. We loved it. Can you please share some of the tips in living in Orvieto?we are from Southern California. We have been looking at Abruzzo in the coastal area of Pescara. But we are open for suggestions from people who have done it. Thanks so much for your time,Lea and Ray.

  7. chef1955 February 27, 2015 at 11:10 am #

    The closest I’ve ever been to Italy is a little place near where we live called LaManda’s. It’s been in business for well over 50 years and the reason is quite simple,the food is amazing! There’s not a thing on that menu I would eat or should I say haven’t tried! One of my very favorite is the chicken scarparo,so yummy it melts in your mouth. And for the finish it’s always their house made ricotta cheesecake with an espresso of course! Or perhaps a biscotti or two!

  8. Sharyl Wolter February 27, 2015 at 11:15 am #

    I took a trip to Milan when I was in high school. As we were on the train, one of the Italian men goosed me. Ah, memories!

    • chef1955 February 27, 2015 at 11:21 am #

      Not exactly what the subject line is about Sharyl,but whatever floats your boat!

      • Domenica Marchetti February 27, 2015 at 11:34 am #

        Ha ha! I did say “sweet” or “bittersweet” memories in the text of the post. I have a few such memories myself from bus rides in Rome. More bitter than sweet! 😉

        • chef1955 February 27, 2015 at 11:47 am #

          Lol! Life is about experiences,even if it’s a bus ride in Italy! Wishing I was there! Enjoy the day,ciao! 🙂

  9. janster7777 February 27, 2015 at 11:18 am #

    Stopping for fresh olive bread in Venice after a morning jog. Perfect beginning to the day.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 1:54 pm #

      A morning jog in Venice…even I would get up for that. And the olive bread.

  10. Sue Westall February 27, 2015 at 11:32 am #

    We love Italian food and my husband got me a KA pasta roller for Christmas. I made lobster and shrimp stuffed ravioli last weekend – even made homemade ricotta for it. Heavenly! Some biscotti for dessert would have been wonderful.

  11. Virginia Muccari February 27, 2015 at 11:33 am #

    My husband and I went to Italy 6 years ago and it is our plan to take one of your culinary tours in the future. It is a magical place and gets in your heart and soul. My husband was born there but came to America as a young child.My father was a baker and he made the most amazing Amaretto cheesecake and custard puffs that were filled with Italian crema. We love biscotti and I would love a copy of your cookbook. I love to bake and I recently made a cannoli flavored biscotti using ricotta, mini chocolate chips and candied cherries, it really had the taste of a cannoli!

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 1:56 pm #

      Virginia, it sounds as if you’ve inherited your father’s talent for baking. Cannoli-flavored biscotti!!! I hope you father left you some of his recipes. Thank you for your comment.

  12. Ciao Chow Linda February 27, 2015 at 11:43 am #

    Of all the trips I’ve made to Italy, the most memorable remains the first, when I met all my aunts, uncles and cousins. How revelatory to see all these people who resembled my mom! I’m so sorry I have other commitments and can’t be at Fante’s – a great shop and wonderful place for a book signing. But I’m itching for my copy to arrive in the mail. Hopefully any day now. In bocce al lupo, cara.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 1:57 pm #

      Grazie, cara amica. I have no doubt that first visit was special indeed. xo

  13. Jenny Hartin February 27, 2015 at 12:46 pm #

    Haven’t been to Italy but hopefully soon. We love Italian treats – cannoli, tiramisu and biscotti….

  14. Cynthia Sasaki February 27, 2015 at 1:02 pm #

    In Rome, I love the Galleria Doria Pampphilj. For eating, it’s Sora Margherita in the Jewish Ghetto district for carciofi alla giudea or Pianostrada Laboratoriodicucina on Vicolo Del Cedro 26 in Trastevere. I do love Rome. Where do I find maritozzi?

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 1:58 pm #

      I love it too, Cynthia. It’s my favorite city. My aunts used to get maritozzi at Pasticceria Marinari, which was the pasticceria near their house (near Villa Ada). But it’s been awhile since I’ve had them. Something to do on my next visit, I guess! Cheers

  15. hollide February 27, 2015 at 1:08 pm #

    My favorite Italian “dolce” is my husband. Being married to him has opened up a whole new world of culture, cuisine, architecture, and beauty to me.
    We visit Italy every year and always make a point of spending time with his family from his maternal and paternal side, but we also love to explore places that we have never been before.
    My mind and my heart are always open to learning more about his family’s county and Italy has embraced me and welcomed me with open arms.
    Traveling and eating our way through Italy truly is “la dolce vita.”

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 1:59 pm #

      What a sweet tribute to your husband. I’m not surprised Italy has embraced you!

  16. Insung February 27, 2015 at 1:15 pm #

    Dolomiti. Fresh squeezed Blood orange juice.
    Almond cake with cappucino. Aaaahhh..

  17. Maria Crimi February 27, 2015 at 1:46 pm #

    I love to make and eat biscotti. I have never been to Italy. That is on my husbands and my bucket list.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:01 pm #

      I hope you and your husband get there Maria. It really is a wonderful place.

  18. Joyce Q February 27, 2015 at 3:25 pm #

    Many years ago I vacationed in Riomaggiore, and booked into a pensione run by a sweet, elderly couple, Illario and Maria. They made me feel so at home that it was like being with my grandparents. Every morning, I joined them for a delicious hearty breakfast before heading out for the day.

    One day, on Illario’s recommendation, I planned to set off very early and hike to a distant cliff-side vineyard where I would have a great view of the sunrise. The evening before, I asked Maria if I could take some coffee with me on my hike. It didn’t occur to me that coffee to go was still a strange idea in many countries. In Italy, one sits and savors coffee along with conversation, or grabs an espresso and drinks it right away, standing at a coffee bar. Maria shook her head apologetically and explained, “We no have coffee for travel, so sorry.”

    The next day before dawn, I was just about to head off on my hike when I heard Maria’s voice call out to me from the darkness. She came over to me and put something in my hands. It was a coffee can wrapped in a towel and tied up tight in a plastic bag. “Coffee to take for travel,” she said. Maria and Illario had apparently puzzled over my request the night before and figured out a solution for me. I will never forget this wonderful couple, my stay at their rustic pensione, or that amazing can of coffee that I got to enjoy while watching the sun rise over Riomaggiore!

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:02 pm #

      Your story won my daughter’s heart, Joyce. And mine. Thank you for sharing it.

      • Gina Whiteman March 5, 2015 at 3:37 pm #

        Congratulations, Joyce on winning “A Ciao Biscotti Giveaway”!! I also enjoyed reading everyone’s entry about such a beautiful country that is so dear to my heart!!

      • Joyce Q. March 6, 2015 at 2:28 am #

        Oh my gosh, Domenica, I am so honored. I read along as everyone shared their stories, and loved them all as well. I feel like I won the lottery! You have my email address, yes? Will you be able to contact me that way to get any other necessary contact info from me? I can’t wait to receive your book and the Fantes Biscotti pan! I hope you will sign your book for me! Thank you!

  19. Karen February 27, 2015 at 3:35 pm #

    We had a week in Venice this past September. It was the most beautiful city I have ever been too and we have been all over Europe and the US. The food was fantastic and we ate in small mom and pop restaurants that were so good. There wasn’t a bad one in the bunch. I recommend everyone to see Venice just once in your lifetime as it is such a beautiful place.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:05 pm #

      Karen, you did the right thing in going to those mom and pop places. Venice is best when you steer clear of that heavily traveled route from the Rialto to Piazza San Marco. But you’re right, it truly is magical. There is nothing like it on earth. And I love the Peggy Guggenheim collection! Cheers and thank you for your comment.

  20. margo February 27, 2015 at 3:40 pm #

    Studied in Italy..love the people and love the food! My favorite….Cinque Terra and Amallfi coast!

  21. Liz Wolfe February 27, 2015 at 3:53 pm #

    I want you to know about our wonderful Luigi’s Market and Restaurant- it has been in business
    In Bakersfield California since 1907. It understandably is a local favorite!

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:06 pm #

      Wonderful ~ once upon a time there were so many of these Italian delis and markets. It’s good to know some still exist. Will definitely seek it out if I ever get to Bakersfield. Thanks!

  22. JoAnn Cola February 27, 2015 at 3:59 pm #

    Sweet memories of taking my oldest granddaughter to Abruzzo, where she sampled the gelati in every village, from Sulmona, Popoli, Raiano, Chieti, and to the beach in Montesilvano. And of the big box of figs given to us by our friends in Corfinio to take home with us. They made it as far as the plane…

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:08 pm #

      Love it, JoAnn. I have definitely consumed more than my fair share of gelato in Abruzzo.

  23. Mark A. Bauman February 27, 2015 at 4:05 pm #

    A couple of years ago we took a trip to Puglia in the springtime. Off-season for most of their tourism and we went to several places where they did not often see many Americans, and where English was not heard nor spoken much. Fortunately, I spoke enough Italian to get by. What was “Dolce” was the repeated generosity of spirit displayed by many people we encountered. We found a charming seaside trattoria where no one spoke English. We had a wonderful lunch of local seafood. Near our table was a display of different Pugliese extra-virgin olive oils. After lunch, I asked the waiter, in Italian, which was his favorite, and how much would it be to buy a bottle. A few minutes later, he returned with a bottle which he said was his favorite and said it was a gift from the restaurant, since they appreciated our efforts to find them and to be so willing to try a tasting menu of their local fish. The next day, we were in a remote area inland at a very old, traditional ristorante. Again, no one spoke English. We had a tasting menu again and they were pleasantly surprised that we knew some of the local ingredients and dishes. As we left, we were presented with some baked goods that they sold there. At lunch the next day, in one of the larger towns, there was a large group of Italians all having lunch, celebrating what turned out to be one of the guest’s birthdays. When they brought out the cake, and they sang “Tanti auguri” to the birthday guest, I got up, went over to him and wished him birthday greetings in Italian. A couple of minutes later, two pieces of the cake were delivered to our table. The next day at lunch in yet another city, we had lunch at a recommended place run by two aunts and a niece. Again, we were the only English-speaking people in the place. The aunts were a bit fascinated that two Americans, one of whom spoke some Italian, sought them out. We had a tasting menu, and they kept coming over to make sure we enjoyed everything, which we did. After discovering that I knew what the dishes were, and that I enjoyed cooking, they invited us into the kitchen, where they showed us how they prepared some of their signature, local dishes. And although we certainly had “dolci” in terms of gelati, biscotti, pastries, etc. again, what was “dolce”, was the kindness, hospitality, appreciation and generosity afforded to us by many of the people we encountered while there.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:09 pm #

      I have had similar things happen to me time and again in Italy, Mark, including last summer when a family celebrating a birthday at a restaurant shared their birthday cake with me and my Abruzzo Presto partners. Sounds like you know where to go!

  24. Marsha February 27, 2015 at 4:05 pm #

    Just returned from 2 weeks in southern Italy – so many wonderful Italian memories. The market in Ortygia – luscious citrus and fish, dinner at Pane e Vino in Peschici including grilled lambs liver and sweetbreads, special almond cookies and cassata for the Almond blossom festival in Agrigento, amazing breads in Matera. Working on replicating those memories and would love to master biscotti

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:10 pm #

      Sounds like a wonderful and delicious trip, Marsha. Thank you for sharing your comment.

  25. Sandy Crombie February 27, 2015 at 4:11 pm #

    Biscotti have been one of my favorite treats since I first tasted one. So delightfully crunchy! I think my favorite combination is orange and almonds, but then there is coconut and chocolate, or pumpkin, walnut and cinnamon, or, or, or…Tiramisu is my second favorite – can you tell I love sweet?! So, now, I make all my own, when I want. Life is good.

  26. Constance February 27, 2015 at 4:24 pm #

    Years ago in Rome we had the most spectacular meal featuring a freeform lasagna and served by a Roman beauty by the name of Floriana. I don’t think my husband will ever forget her. And I’ll never forget that pasta! 🙂

  27. Marisa Franca @ All Our Way February 27, 2015 at 4:31 pm #

    My heavens, trying to narrow this down is so difficult. I haven’t made or posted these recipes yet but they bring back memories of my mamma and what she made — fritole, struccolo di pomi, and pinza and twisted sweet bread with colored eggs. These dolci are what made the holidays special for me. She has been gone a short time and I miss her terribly. I have so many questions for her about our life in Italy and now I’ll never have those questions answered. My dream is to return to my homeland and just absorb Italy!! Our blog has been a recent endeavour and it started for me wanting to touch and recall my Italian roots. At Christmas we give biscotti out as presents. There is a 92 Italian gentleman we befriended that looks for to the biscotti every Christmas. I’d love to have your cookbook and add to our list — in fact I would like to try out the pan that you now use.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:14 pm #

      My mom used to make a similar sweet yeasted bread ~ braided ~ with eggs. Writing about your Italian roots is a lovely way to honor your mamma, Marisa. Thank you for writing.

  28. kate February 27, 2015 at 4:41 pm #

    I ate so much wonderful food in Italy. But something that has always stayed with me is the extraordinary sweetness of peaches bought at a fruit stand in Milan. We have wonderful peaches here, but these peaches were like no other I ever tasted.

    I made the chocolate chunk cherry biscotti from your book yesterday — Fabulous!

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:15 pm #

      Yes, there is something about the fruit there. Peaches, apricots, melon, figs. As I type this it is snowing incessantly outside making me long even more for summer. So glad you liked the chocolate chunk cherry biscotti!

  29. Barbara W February 27, 2015 at 4:47 pm #

    How to pick just one sweet thing about visits to Italy? Just now, on this cold but sunny afternoon, I’m thinking of the joy of mountaintop picnics featuring meats grilled over wood fires accompanied by olives, tomatoes, cheeses, fresh crusty bread, local wines…ahh. I most recently enjoyed this delightful way to share a meal with friends during Domenic’s culinary tour to Abruzzo last fall.

  30. Karen February 27, 2015 at 5:04 pm #

    I was dining alone in a family restaurant in Rome. When I declined dessert (how could I!), the doting owner insisted I eat a perfectly ripe tangerine, which he peeled and presented to me. I didn’t refuse, and it turned out it was just what I wanted. Those little touches of generous, humble hospitality will always stay with me.

    As for the massage, you could treat yourself to a low-key yoga class instead. Very relaxing and good for the soul!

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:17 pm #

      How lovely on the part of the owner. Yes, those little moments make a big impact. I should take a yoga class ~ lord knows I live in yoga pants!

  31. Adele February 27, 2015 at 5:14 pm #

    My life long dream was to visit Italy, primarily where all my Grandparents grew up, but it does not look as though that will ever become reality, but I will always have my Grandmother’s recipes for fine Italian food including biscotti which I love. I would love to try your version from your book, but I am a long way from NY now, so hopefully I can get your book soon.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:18 pm #

      Adele, how wonderful that you have your grandmother’s recipes. Those are priceless! Thank you for writing.

  32. Betty Ann Quirino @Mango_Queen February 27, 2015 at 5:30 pm #

    I enjoyed our family vacation to Rome a few years ago, which was a graduation gift to my younger son. We enjoyed the Vatican, seeing the Pope up close and the historical sites during the day because we had a wonderful tour guide, a young American scholar based in Rome and his name is Rich Brunn. He still does tours. It was very personalized and our guide was so knowledgeable about the rich history of the city. My best memory was finding “Ristorante Quirino” (and that’s our last name) near the Trevi Fountain. We introduced ourselves to Signora Quirino, the owner and she warmly treated us like long lost relatives. We dined and wined the best meal one could ever have in Italy. We also spent a few days in Florence after that. It was too brief but the memories will stay forever. We hope to go back soon. I can’t wait to get hold of your Biscotti cookbook and start baking from it, Domenica. Here’s a link to one of the popular dessert posts on my blog, your Torta Di Mele recipe : http://asianinamericamag.com/2014/12/how-to-make-torta-di-mele-italian-apple-cake-by-domenica-marchetti/

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:19 pm #

      Betty Ann, thank you for sharing the link and for sharing your treasured memory. it makes me happy to know you enjoyed Roma. xx

  33. Marguerite Rigby February 27, 2015 at 5:36 pm #

    My husband and I are joining you on the 2015 culinary tour. I’ve always wanted to visit the place of my father’s birth. I’m sure we’ll make many memories that we’ll relive every time I cook a fabulous dish from Abruzzo when we return.

    • Domenica Marchetti February 28, 2015 at 5:55 pm #

      Marguerite, this is so exciting. I can’t wait for our tour. It’s going to be memorable for sure!

  34. Kimberly Lo February 27, 2015 at 7:52 pm #

    I went to Italy with my family, touring a few of the major cities like Rome, Venice and Florence. I loved how there were ancient structures just blocks from more modern architecture. It just put things into perspective and really made you feel like you were walking through time. And the food!

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:20 pm #

      Yes! That juxtaposition between ancient and modern is another thing I love about Italy.

  35. Helene Korchin February 27, 2015 at 8:12 pm #

    I went to Italy in Oct for a week of cooking in Umbria. I had a wonderful time, made new friends who live in England, picked fresh vegies from the garden, made pizza from scratch and fell in love with Ameila and Orte.
    It was the Sweetest trip of my life.

  36. Pat February 27, 2015 at 10:53 pm #

    Biscotti and coffee, a favorite breakfast and dessert! Not bad for lunch either. Any flavor will do! In NJ, check out Orvieto, yummy food (sweet and savory), great people- a truly european dining experience!

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:21 pm #

      Thanks for the recommendation, Pat. Where in NJ? My folks are there so I will check it out.

  37. Claudine Lalli Eckhart February 27, 2015 at 10:56 pm #

    I went to my nonna’s village in Calabria. NO American had ever visited there! They were so kind and even invited us to stay with a family there. It was a dream come true for us. My nonna was 26 years old when she left with a 4 year old daughter and a 9 month old daughter. My nonno was waiting for them in America. When the ship arrived in New York harbor, they were transferred to a tender which would take them to Ellis Island. The water was very rough and she had trouble holding onto both children. The baby fell in the water and was rescued by two sailors. The baby died a month later in Brooklyn. The people in the village had heard all about this tragedy and were so happy to meet us.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:24 pm #

      What a story, Claudine! Bittersweet for sure. I know there are many families who suffered heartbreak and hardship coming over here.

  38. Chiara February 28, 2015 at 3:06 am #

    in bocca al lupo per questo nuovo libro Domenica ! Amo tutta l’Italia, è la mia patria ma sono particolarmente legata alla mia città Trieste, se verrai a visitarla ti farò da cicerone e i mostrerò un sacco di cose meravigliose ! Buon we , un abbraccio !

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:25 pm #

      Spero veramente di venire a trovarti a Trieste, Chiara. Grazie e un abbraccio!

  39. Carolsue February 28, 2015 at 4:21 am #

    I have never been to Italy, but I love Italian food — sweet and otherwise! Cannoli Poke Cake is a delectable dessert I just discovered! So good!

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:26 pm #

      OK ~ I have never heard of cannoli poke cake, Carolsue. Can you describe it? I need to know more!

  40. Betty P February 28, 2015 at 7:33 am #

    I’ve been to Italy. My father was born there, and the sweetest thing about Italy is the air. You breath in a scent of the sea, the trees, the grapes. All combined, it’s intoxicating!

  41. Dena Sprague February 28, 2015 at 9:00 am #

    In the early 80’s I relocated to the East coast from the Midwest. One of the first authentic italian recipes I tasted was a bruschetta on anchovy bread. It was an unforgettable experience. I met several people at work who would bring food in and I had my first taste of homemade biscotti and I’ve been a fan ever since. I would love to have this book.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:31 pm #

      Isn’t it interesting that the simplest Italian foods, like bruschetta, can be so memorable?

  42. Dawn Marie Gray February 28, 2015 at 9:01 am #

    The sweetest thing about Italy is it is where my family originates. Everything I value about family began there.

  43. loes February 28, 2015 at 9:07 am #

    The single best memory I have of a holiday, in Italy or elswhere, was that time in Abruzzo where we went hiking. We started early and just outside our campsite we met a group of Abruzzo dogs. They followed us around and we ended up doing our complete hike in the company of these 5 dogs. They guarded us and we shared our bread with them. It was the best hike ever. On returning to our campsite we got a little nervous. Was our lovely group of dogs going to stay with us? That would have been a bit of a problem. We shouldn’t have worried. We turned left to enter the campsite, they went straight on, never looking back.I’ll never forget that day and oneday I hope to have my own Maremma dogs.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:35 pm #

      This story made me smile, Loes. Last summer, I took my daughter with me to Abruzzo and she befriended all the dogs. They would follow her around and so I started calling her “the dog whisperer of Abruzzo.” Those Maremma sheep dogs…

  44. Denise February 28, 2015 at 12:59 pm #

    My Sicilian grandfather would travel by train from the Bronx with a large pan of lasagna on his lap…just to give us a taste of Italy. Meanwhile, I remember sitting patiently in the kitchen, longing for my Italian grandmother to occasionally turn and place an olivey slice of eggplant on my awaiting plate. She would turn to prepare more for the casserole-the aroma permeating the room. I would wait again. Sigh. It has never tasted quite the same since.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:37 pm #

      I know exactly what you mean. That aroma of frying eggplant…or zucchini. Nothing like it, especially when it’s your nonna’s kitchen.

  45. Marie February 28, 2015 at 10:01 pm #

    I’ll never forget the first time I saw Venice, we walked out of the train station at around 5.00 in the evening, the sun was glistening on the water, I’ve never seen anything like it, a floating city filled with bridges, canals, beautiful architecture everywhere and then walking into Piazza San Marco when dueling orchestras were playing Bocelli’s “Time to say goodbye”! Venice is truly magical! I just want to stop by to congratulate you, Domenica, I love the book, in fact I have 2 so don’t put me in the giveaway. The hard part is what to bake first, I’m thinking it might be your iced triple lemon biscotti!

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:38 pm #

      Piazza San Marco is like an enormous salon. I love sitting and having an aperitivo and just imagining what it must have been like centuries ago…Thanks for commenting Marie

  46. Sarah March 1, 2015 at 8:35 am #

    SO excited for this book! I’ve taken a biscotti class at my local cooking school and finally had the chance to visit Italy in 2011; we spent three glorious weeks exploring Northern Italy as a family. Would love to expand my biscotti repertoire!

  47. Valerie March 1, 2015 at 8:43 am #

    When I was in college I went on an Etruscan excavation in Italy. Each day our cook made a wonderful meal for us. I’ll never forget writing home about having “hair” in our “hare” pasta!

    Of all the places I’ve traveled I’m always still drawn to Italy.

  48. Eloise Doeren March 1, 2015 at 11:29 am #

    My hubby and I visited Abruzzo last year and stayed in Sulmona as our base. We immediately felt we had come home! One of our favorite places to have dinner was Pensavo Peggio. One night we enjoyed the night with the table next to ours celebrating a 75th birthday. The guitar came out and we all joined in singing italian favorites as well as Beatle’s favorites. A night to remember! My hubby passed away recently and I have many memories but the ones in Sulmona are especially dolci.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:43 pm #

      Yes, I know the place, I know the guitar. Love it. Thanks, Eloise.

  49. bmiller309 March 1, 2015 at 2:24 pm #

    I had the joy this summer of my first trip to Italy with the highlight being spent in Abruzzo. My time in Abruzzo made all the tumblers of my life seem to come together. I had arrived. I was home! I realize my love of mountains (ah the stunning mountains) and the sea are in the genes passed on from my paternal grandfather who was born in the region. And the food… how could I choose one thing. Each meal easily became my favorite. I was blessed to be able to taste all the amazing flavors from my childhood. From our first meal in Scanno to restaurants such as The Tanks, Delicias, and Vineria per Passione in Vasto, I was in heaven. Our meal on the traboccho owned by Rinaldo and Maria was stunning! My husband and I now love making their Vasto fish stew. Even as I write this, I am overwhelmed with the beauty of the area, the warmth of the people, and the simple foods that create such stunning flavors! It was also such fun to cook with the friends and family of our guide, Fabrizzio Lucci. The biggest surprise was an ancestry search that resulted in new found family and friends from Teramo.

    Domenica, we arrived at Emanuel and Nicolo’s vineyard shortly after you departed. You know what a treat we received with the wines, cheeses and pork!

    I made my first biscotti this year! It was wonderful. I am planning to be at Fante’s on Saturday to purchase your book and reminisce about Abruzzo! I look forward to more biscotti making and more time in Abruzzo especially to hike the glorious mountains!

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:44 pm #

      I’m sorry our paths didn’t cross in Abruzzo, but I’m thrilled we’ll meet on Saturday! Right now it is snowing like mad, but the forecast for Saturday looks good so I will be there ~ with a big plate of biscotti. Looking forward to it.

  50. Ally March 1, 2015 at 6:22 pm #

    I was in Italy when they won the world cup. The fact that people were so willing to let us join in on their celebrations was wonderful!

  51. abigailnightingale March 2, 2015 at 9:53 am #

    Biscotti are fun to make and delicious to eat. I would love to travel to Italy someday!

  52. paninigirl March 2, 2015 at 10:43 am #

    My “sweet” memory comes from our very first trip to Italy. We were in Florence up at Piazza Michelangelo and were still somewhat jet lagged and so stopped into a cafe up there for gelato. We had a charming waiter who gave us some of his tips for the city. It was a lovely sunny day and with that amazing view and the gelato we were in heaven!

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:46 pm #

      I find that jet lag disappears pretty quickly when there are things like high renaissance art and gelato waiting…xo

  53. Kelly March 3, 2015 at 9:19 am #

    Domenica! Here is something sweet about Italy – on the day you posted this, I visited Italy for the very first time! I was just in the South of France visiting friends and we took the train to San Remo for lunch. (And for a decent cup of coffee, I have to admit). The first thing we did was get a cappuccino – in the train station. Then we walked a bit, had a glorious lunch (pasta vongole and ravioli of some divine sort). Feeling too full for dessert, the waiter still brought us a plate of tiramisu to share that was a slice of heaven and was soon gone. I will remember that lunch for ages! Congrats on your new book! xox

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:47 pm #

      See, I was right! Now we just have to go back together.

      • Kelly March 7, 2015 at 5:27 pm #

        Let’s plan on it! Now that I have left the dreaded 2014 behind me!

  54. amealia from z tasty life March 3, 2015 at 10:33 am #

    Domenica: where to even start here? There is a reason they call it “la dolce vita”… when I was living there I did not really understand all the fuss that tourists made about that concept, I was not really that appreciative of it. It was not until I left the country and came to live in the United States that I really came to understand what that strange longing was that would chase me day in and day out: it was that “qualcosa” in the air, the communality, the coming together over a simple table with breaking bread, it was the funny faces and even the intense conversations over the simplest things (like what goes – or does not go – into a dish), it was the animated way of living, the vivacity (which is literally life-fullness) of the people… ALL of that: how I miss it when I am not there!!! That is the sweet life.

  55. Katie Walker March 3, 2015 at 11:45 am #

    My favorite memory from Italy is visiting my family on the Amalfi Coast during late Spring and seeing all these lemons the size of my head and learning how to make limoncello from scratch. I was allowed to have my first sips around 14.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:50 pm #

      Katie, did I know about your Italian background?!?! Those lemons. I almost tried to smuggle some back one summer but cooler heads (my husband’s) prevailed.

  56. Susan And Wade March 3, 2015 at 1:12 pm #

    One of our favorite things is “dolce far niente” – the sweet art of doing nothing is as sweet as it gets for us! Of course, we also love the real dolce!

  57. Katy Gorman March 4, 2015 at 8:33 am #

    This past Christmas time, I was invited to be a judge in our local ‘Cecio Ripieno Mon Amour’ competition. Now in its 4th or 5th year I think, it’s a local ‘bake-off’ here in Sulmona where all of the local Nonne (well there were close to 100 entries so perhaps not all of them…) submit their own home-made version of this classic Abruzzese sweet treat. Often using a carefully guarded secret recipe passed down through the generations, it is essentially a fried pastry pocket filled with a smooth paste of chick peas and chocolate. Yum. I was chosen as a judge with the idea that my non-Italian heritage I would have a unique perspective. Almost every day in late December and early January, even after a heavy snow-fall, our doorbell rang and a small, grease-stained, numbered, paper baggie was delivered. There were a total of 5 judges and we each had about 20 from which to choose our finalist. I’m delighted top say that my own personal favourite went on to be the eventual winner! It was a wonderful experience which I will treasure for many years to come.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:53 pm #

      What a fun task, Katy! I’d love to do that. It must have been so interesting to see and taste the differences between the cookies. Not to mention delicious. Hope to see you soon in Sulmona…

  58. Gina Whiteman March 4, 2015 at 8:13 pm #

    Something sweet about Italy!!!!~ My father came to America when he was 3 yrs old. His father had come over years before that to make enough money to bring his wife and 2 sons over here some day! And around Christmas time of 1937, my grandmother, Carolina, and her 2 young sons arrived just in time for the holidays.

    My grandfather, Domenicoantonia Guanciale died when I was in elementary school so I don’t remember a whole lot about him, but I was able to spend lots of time while my grandma!!

    There are so many special things I loved about her! So many funny little things~the plastic coverings she had on each piece of furniture in her living room, the time she taught me to start a new rose bush from a cutting we placed under a quart jar in the dirt, the backyard that was all garden except the little concrete sidewalk that ran down the middle, the little shed in the back of the garden where she dried her onions and garlic, the rows of black raspberries we could pick from and the canned raspberries down in that scary little basement, and especially how every time I would show up at her house with friends~she would say “Mangia, mangia” and insist that we eat something.

    When I was in college, my grandmother passed away without me ever getting to say goodbye.

    Years later, I married and had 2 children. I was so sad that they never had the chance to know my grandma. Hearing stories about her could never replace meeting her in person.

    In 2005, my dad and my mom took my daughter and me to Italy with them. We spend about one week in Roma and then about a week in my dad’s little Abruzzo mountain town~Collelongo. I will NEVER forget the emotions I felt as I approached dad’s town for the first time. I tried hard to fight back tears~I was finally getting to see where my family came from and meet the family my grandparents had left behind in “the old country”!!

    But the sweetest memory of all (as I am still trying not to cry as I type this), was when I got to meet my dad’s first cousin, Maria Manna! Maria was in her 80’s, just about the age my grandmother was when she passed away! To me~~that was my grandmother standing there!! She was the spitting image of the grandmother I remembered from 30 years ago!! Maria looked so much like my grandma and her mannerisms were identical!! Words can not express how grateful I am that my daughter, who was 20 at the time, was able to meet Maria! She was the closest thing I could ever share with my daughter that could give her an idea of what my grandmother was like!!

    Maria was a young teenager when my father left Collelongo. She used to babysit my dad (he had to have been under the age of 3!). My father loved to go back to see family and Maria was one of the first people he would look for!!

    My daughter and I were able to return to Collelongo in 2010~but without my dad because he died in 2008. We visited with Maria and her 3 sons as well as her grandkids who are all in their 20’s and 30’s. I have loved staying in touch with her grandkids on Facebook.

    Sadly this past December, I learned that Maria passed away at the age of 91. This time~bittersweet~I am planning a trip back to Collelongo in August this summer and will sadly miss not getting to see her!

    • Domenica Marchetti March 5, 2015 at 2:55 pm #

      A lifetime of memories, Gina. What a gift your nonna and other relatives have given you, and it’s one you are passing on to your own children. Thank you for sharing your story.

  59. sippitysup March 6, 2015 at 2:10 pm #

    Sorry I missed the giveaway, but the book is gorgeous. If you make it to So Call on your journey’s please let me know. I have a stack of DM books that need to be signed. GREG

    • Domenica Marchetti March 21, 2015 at 9:38 am #

      Belated thanks, Greg. I would love to get out to SoCali and I will at some point I’m sure, though I don’t have immediate plans. Will keep you posted. I’d love to meet ~ we could cook together on your beautiful Lacanche! Cheers, D

  60. Casimir Barbara March 20, 2015 at 9:32 pm #

    Biscotti are very tasty, have made four recipes so far. What a surprise to find savory biscotti. Delightful for appetizers.
    Re: the fig biscotti, p.42, there is no second baking. Was that intentional? My batch tasted better baked a second time, 10 minutes each side.

    • Domenica Marchetti March 21, 2015 at 9:37 am #

      Hi Barbara, thank you for chiming in. I’m so glad you are enjoying the book. Yes, the omission of the second baking was intentional. I liked the chewy texture of these so much after the first bake that I decided to leave them be. But I’m happy to know that they are also good after the second baking. I’ll give it a try next time I make them. Cheers, D

  61. Mark March 23, 2015 at 12:48 am #

    Saw your article in the Washington Post, and your Post TV video. Congratulations. I make my own Tuscan bread, but I’ve never been a dessert baker. Except one. I tried biscotti years ago and it turned out surprisingly fine, and I’ve been hooked ever since. Some of the store brands are OK, but of course nothing like the homemade. I’m glad you mentioned once-baked. I’ve never tried it, but some years back I saw a Michael Chiarello recipe on Food Network for once-baked cookies, and they looked delicious. Unscotti he called them. (That was back when that network was more than mostly competition shows.) Anyway, next up is your recipe and book. Mark Florio.

  62. patricia colantonio farrell February 5, 2016 at 4:09 pm #

    Biscotti is my go to dessert!! I love all kinds but my favorite are the almond, dunked in a cup of espresso…yum! I’m so jealous that you’ll be at Fantes, being from Philly but transplanted to the midwest, I only get there when I’m back home!! Enjoy all my fellow Philadelphians and get a wonder ice, cup of cawfee, and relax!!

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