Tag | holidays

Dicembre Dolce: Italian(ish) Chocolate Bark

OK, I know chocolate bark isn’t Italian. It was invented by Williams-Sonoma. Or maybe California as a way of marketing dried fruit. Either way, chocolate + dried fruit = holiday heaven in my book. Add nuts and you really send me over the moon. So I made some bark. And since it is my mission […]

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Dicembre Dolce: Cranberry-Hazelnut Biscotti

I have my issues with social media (don’t we all) but there are times when I appreciate ~ even enjoy ~ it. Like when a spontaneous cookie exchange breaks out on Facebook. That is what happened to Linda, Adri, Marie and me a couple of weeks ago. One minute we were all commenting on a […]

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Dicembre Dolce: Torta di Nocciole

Welcome to the 2014 edition of Dicembre Dolce. This is the month in which I post recipes for fabulous Italian sweets. We’re kicking off the season with an elegant torta di nocciole, hazelnut cake, a specialty of the Piemonte region. This cake has been on my mind since I enjoyed a slice a couple of weeks ago […]

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Gabriella’s Pizza Rustica

Over the years, my mother’s recipe for pizza rustica has been published here and there, in print and online. I included a version of it in my second book, Big Night In ~ it’s a celebration food, for sure ~ and I wrote about it years ago for The Washington Post. Most recently, I posted […]

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Dicembre Dolce: Panna Cotta alle Spezie

Raise your hand if… * yours is always the last house on the cul de sac to put up holiday lights. * you have yet to buy ~ let alone decorate ~ a tree. * the only batch of Christmas cookies you baked is long gone and you have yet to bake more. * haven’t […]

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Easter Break: Savory Cheese Biscotti

It is time to come to grips with the fact that I will never run my household the way my mother ran hers. How do I know? Because when I was growing up, by this time Easter week my mom would have: * Made and frozen her pizza rustica, a classic savory Easter torte, so that it […]

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A Favorite Cake to Welcome the New Year

Buon Anno a tutti! Happy New Year. As I sit here writing and thinking about the year ahead, I am (literally) surrounded by the past. During the Christmas break, my husband and I decided to start a long-overdue project to clean and reorganize our basement. So far, we have said farewell to five huge bins […]

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Dicembre Dolce: Panforte di Siena

For most of my life—right up until last week—I despised panforte, the celebrated Christmas fruit-and-nut confection from Siena. Every year at about this time, a flat, sort-of circular pleated package containing a dense hockey puck of a—what? Was it a cake? a torte? candy?—would appear on our buffet, purchased by my mother. She would unwrap […]

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Bar Nuts

I inherited my passion for cooking from my mom. But my dad is the one who got me hooked on cookbooks. For a few years in the 1990s, my dad gave me a cookbook every Christmas. I do not know what precipitated this tradition (my mom was always the holiday shopper in the house). And […]

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