Feels Good To Be Home

It feels good to be “home.” When I see Capo Zafferano, pictured, and swim in the sea below, I am in my land. These are the waters where my grandfather fished and swam more than 100 years ago before emigrating to the United States. It’s an amazing feeling to think of him and my grandmother…

Ricotta is Right

This beautiful plate of “pasta alla Norma” was my dinner back at the beginning of June in Bagheria, Sicily my grandmother’s hometown. It is the classic Sicilian pasta dish, made with maccheroni (in this case rigatoni) with a light tomato sauce, sautéed (or fried) eggplant, grated salted ricotta, and if available, fresh basil. Please take…

Pesto Control

Local trattorias, like one of my all-time favorites, Don Ciccio in Bagheria, usually offer seasonal specials that we covet because they only appear on menus annually, when the produce is fresh from the garden. For example, this bucatini pasta appears to be dressed with a familiar basil pesto; however, basil is not the base here,…

Sfincione for Christmas Eve in Sicily

Very different from our Italian-American tradition for Christmas Eve, which is to have a large, family meal often featuring fish, the tradition my cousins in Bagheria, Sicily follow for “La Vigilia,” is to have sfincione Bagherese along with pan-fried cardoon (artichoke thistle) and maybe a small serving of pasta. Pictured is my cousin Evelina’s favorite…

Feel Inspired

You bring light to the world when you support artists and small business owners. And you’ll feel inspired when you get upclose to an artist like Mirella Pipia, pictured, in Sicily in her ceramic workshop and boutique. Shop small this weekend, when we are offering a special pricing incentive on our 2018 small-group, multi-sensory tours,…