Toni Lydecker's Tavola Talk Blog

Tale of a Black Truffle

Fresh truffles are usually available only to chefs,  but I can get them just by walking two blocks to my local farmer’s market. Every Saturday at Fidel Gamboa’s stand, fresh truffles–black or white or both, depending on the season–are displayed in a case like the edible jewels they are. These truffles, from Alba in Italy’s [...]

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Fri, February 21 2014 » Eggs and Cheese, Pasta, Piemonte, Tampa Bay, travel, Uncategorized » 4 Comments

NYC: Rethinking the Italian Neighborhood Grocery

Looking for Louis Coluccio’s new store in Bay Ridge,  we spotted “Italian Grocery” in old-fashioned stenciling on the brick storefront.  ”Are you sure that’s it?” asked my son-in-law. But even from a moving car, I had also seen A.L.C.’s stylish round logo. The Coluccio family is into its third generation as Brooklyn grocers and importers [...]

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Fri, April 26 2013 » Eggs and Cheese, Italian delis, Italian food, Italian ingredients, Uncategorized » No Comments

Pizza Rustica for Easter (or Anytime)

Pizza rustica has nothing to do with pizza. Also known as torta pasqualina or Easter pie, it is a southern Italian specialty. Creamy ricotta (or basket cheese) and salty salami in a flaky crust, that’s pizza rustica. “Pizza rustica is so old-fashioned it’s cool again,” says David DiBari, chef/owner of The Cookery in Dobbs Ferry, [...]

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Tue, March 26 2013 » Baked Goods and Sweets, Eggs and Cheese, Italian food, Italian lifestyle, Pizza, Uncategorized » No Comments

Celebrate Columbus Day with Portofino Pizza

Don’t forget, Christopher Columbus was Italian. Although his voyages were sponsored by the Spanish, some of the expenses were underwritten by investors from his hometown, Genoa,  one of Italy’s great maritime republics at the time. So I’m thinking there’s no better way to commemorate “Cristoforo Colombo’s” sighting of the Americas than eating Italian over the Columbus [...]

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Thu, October 4 2012 » Baked Goods and Sweets, Eggs and Cheese, Italian food, Italian lifestyle, Pizza, travel » No Comments

Fried Italian Cheese for Dinner

I love pecorino–not the salty aged variety from southern Italy, but the young raw sheep’s milk cheese for whichTuscany and Sardinia are known. When I’m in Italy, I eat this semi-soft to firm table cheese in all the usual ways: with bread, prosciutto, fruit, or in the spring, with young raw fava beans (bacelli), or [...]

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Sat, August 18 2012 » Eggs and Cheese, Italian food, travel » No Comments