Holiday Quinoa Salad

Holiday Quinoa Salad

I’ve never found fresh cranberries in Italy, only dried. Normally it wouldn’t be a problem; after all, I only ever eat fresh cranberries at holiday meals like Thanksgiving and Christmas. Yet, it’s now approaching 2 years since my last cranberry fix; two years since I’ve been home to the US during the holidays.

What do I love about homemade cranberry sauce? Well, for starters, its bright vibrant red color that brightens the table, then there’s that sudden shock of surprise when a cranberry pops in my mouth releasing its tart juices that slowly are taken over by sweetness and later rounded off by a hint of CONTINUE READING

Easy Baked Brie 

Easy Baked Brie 





How I Miss Thanksgiving!

Living abroad in Italy is exciting and exhilarating. I met Mr. Italicano here. I have made extraordinary friends here. I started my business while living here. I love the challenges and adventure that each new day brings while living in il bel paese.  I am grateful and I am thankful each day, yet…I miss Thanksgiving!

I miss the smells from the kitchen mingling with the sweet candles burning. I miss the chaotic sounds that fill the house: the clinking and clanking in the kitchen, kids laughter in the play room and lively shouts coming from the living room after a touchdown.

Easy Baked Brie Recipe One of my favorite Thanksgiving Day foods of all time is this CONTINUE READING

2 Tips for the Perfect Blender Hummus 

2 Tips for the Perfect Blender Hummus 

I absolutely adore hummus. It’s one of my favorite go-to recipes when I entertain guests as it’s the perfect appetizer for everyone: vegans, vegetarians, non vegetarians, lactose intolerant, gluten-free.

2-tips-for-the-perfect-blender-hummus-3  I also love having it in my fridge for a healthy snack or to garnish my dishes to instantly add a good source of vegetable protein :: proteina vegetale and fiber. In short, hummus rocks.

2-tips-for-the-perfect-blender-hummus-4The word hummus is an Arabic word meaning “chickpea.” Do you know how to pronounce “chickpea” in Italian?  Test your knowlege or learn a new word by watching this short video:  CONTINUATE A LEGGERE

Fig, Stracciatella and Honey Bruschetta 

Fig, Stracciatella and Honey Bruschetta 

In this 2 minute recipe, buttery, creamy, silky stracciatella cheese unites with sweet figs and honey to create an irresistible appetizer or dessert. Oh, man, get your taste buds ready for some delicious, simple, real food!

fig-stracciatella-and-honey-bruschetta-3What is stracciatella? Well, if you’ve ever been to Italy or have bought a cone of gelato in an Italian gelato shop you probably know that Stracciatella is a delicious flavor of gelato that contains fior di latte (milk-based gelato) and chocolate chunks. Although delicious, that’s not the stracciatella I’m talking about here. I’m talking about a special artisan CONTINUE READING

Octopus with Sweet Tropea Onions

Octopus with Sweet Tropea Onions

Cooking octopus seems difficult, right? After all, you typically find this delicious delicacy in fancy restaurants at an extravagant price or in gourmet food & wine magazines. Want to know a secret? It’s as easy as cooking pasta. You just plop the octopus in boiling water, let it cool, then slice it up. That’s it. You can serve it alone with a drizzle of good extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper and chopped parsley or add sweet Tropea onions to give a touch of color and a burst of flavor.

octopus-with-sweet-tropea-onionsYou can also easily roast octopus in a cast iron pan or poach then bbq your octopus to give it a charred taste. In Italy, octopus is found in various recipes like CONTINUE READING

Bruschetta with Whipped Feta, Tomato, Basil & Lemon Zest

Bruschetta with Whipped Feta, Tomato, Basil & Lemon Zest

Our garden is overflowing with plump vine-ripened tomatoes :: pomodori! 

Bruschetta-with-Whipped-Feta,-Tomato,-Basil-and-Lemon-Zest-4I’ve been cooking up a storm making millet stuffed tomatoes, basil and tomato sauce and these delightful bruschetta with whipped feta, tomato, basil and lemon zest. 

On a side note, for all you Italian language learners out there, my title should really be “bruschette” because you change the “a” to an “e” to make it plural, yet I never know if it’s better to use the real word or the Americanized term so people get what I am talking about. Bruschetta=1, bruschette=more than one. Final note, the real way to pronounce  bruschetta is like this: “brew—sket—ta”. Here’s a trick to remembering this pronunciation: “you are drinking a brew, when out jumps a skeleton from the closet who yells ta-da!” brew-sket-ta. Random, I know, but these little tricks help with remembering languages at the beginning, at least for me. 🙂

Bruschetta-with-Whipped-Feta,-Tomato,-Basil-and-Lemon-Zest-5Back to those lovely little tomatoes I was telling you about.  Italians are experts at growing and conserving tomatoes for the entire year. Some of the most popular ways to conserve tomatoes are CONTINUE READING

cindy swain NYC

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I'm in New York City right now, doing Cooking Show at Eataly Downtown, Williams-Sonoma Columbus Circle and Bloomingdale's 59th. All of these events are offerd by Smeg USA. Come join me or subscribe to my newsletter to stay up-to-date on my Cooking Shows and enjoy my new recipes delivered directly to your inbox!

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