Pistachio and Pomegranate Pavlova

Pistachio and Pomegranate Pavlova

When I was about eight, I begged my mom for a pottery wheel and clay. I suppose I saw some cartoon or maybe just loved the way clay felt as it  squished out of my hands or stuck in between my toes when I walked along the nearby river bank on a hot summer day. While my attempts to be a sculptor were a disaster—my lopsided flower vase can attest to this—I found sculpting clay to be magical, fun, inspiring and relaxing. I got this same sensation when I made this pistachio and pomegranate pavlova. The texture of this giant meringue is both squishy and stiff. It begs to be formed into a sunken volcano with a crater for a classic pavlova or it can be shaped into a Christmas wreath for your upcoming holiday parties.

holiday-pavlova-with-pomegranate-and-pistachiosI try to avoid making desserts with white sugar, yet, sometimes I can’t resist the classic recipes that I grew up on and loved like chocolate chip cookies, brownies and apple pie. As a kid I was never a fan of meringues, but after trying one the other day at a restaurant, I was quite surprised that I liked them. When I was doing some research online, pavlova popped up on my screen. I couldn’t resist the temptation. Pavlova is a CONTINUE READING

Salted Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

Salted Dark Chocolate Chip Cookies

Now that the kids have returned to school, I suggest you prepare these homemade salted dark chocolate chip cookies as a special snack for them…and, of course, also for you!

salted-dark-chocolate-chip-cookies-3aAlthough I’ve experimented various times with making chocolate chip cookies lighter, there are times when I just crave the classic recipe, well almost classic. I like to use raw cane sugar instead of plain white sugar, I prefer vanilla bean seeds to extract, I like to fill the dough with dark chocolate chips or a shaved dark chocolate bar and I like to CONTINUE READING

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

Carnival Recipe: Lattughe 

Carnival Recipe: Lattughe 

During Carnival in Italy, fried desserts are everywhere—it’s part of the tradition. Occasionally you can find some sweets where you can get away with baking, like these tortellini dolci, yet for other desserts like lattughe, fried crispiness is a crucial factor.

ChiacchiereInstead of proposing one of my usual lighten-up recipes, this week I’m spotlighting my mother-in-law’s traditional Carnival recipe. (Thank you Patrizia!) Depending where you are in Italy, READ MORE

Carnevale Recipe: Tortellini Dolci 

Carnevale Recipe: Tortellini Dolci 

In Italy, the famous Carnevale season kicked off and will end February 9th, known as Martedì Grasso or Fat Tuesday, which is the last day before Ash Wednesday and the start of Lent. The word Carnevale comes from the latin word carnem levare, which means to “eliminate meat”. During Carnevale, food is often consumed in grand quantities, before starting Lent and a period of fasting that lasts until Easter.

Tortellini_DolciThe typical Italian desserts that are eaten during Carnevale are READ MORE

Whipped Mandarin Mascarpone

Whipped Mandarin Mascarpone

Whipped-Mandarin-MascarponeIt’s 2016! And, with the new year :: nuovo anno a lot of new detox recipes are coming soon, but before I get to those, here is a super delicious whipped mandarin mascarpone recipe to finish off those leftover pies, cakes and, if you’re in Italy, panettone.  CONTINUE READING

cindy swain NYC

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