Toni Lydecker's Tavola Talk Blog

Calamondin Marmalade. Huh?

I didn’t know and on the chance you don’t either: Calamondins are tart little citrus fruits related to kumquats.  More often than not, they end up in marmalade. Calamondins fall into the category of obscure Florida fruits you’ll encounter only if lucky enough to know someone with a tree. We do, as it happens. After [...]

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Mon, April 6 2015 » Fruits and Vegetables, Tampa Bay, Uncategorized » No Comments

Mexican Squash Blossom Soup

Recently I sampled artisanal mescal, cicciarones-filled gorditas and flautas with hibiscus flowers in Mexico City. All memorable. But back home what I couldn’t wait to make was squash blossom soup. Actually that was just one of several superb soups I tasted in this great city. At the Hilton Mexico City Reforma‘s terrace restaurant, our waiter [...]

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Fri, February 6 2015 » Fruits and Vegetables, Italian ingredients, Soups and Stews, Tampa Bay, Uncategorized » No Comments

Zucchini Stuffed with Farro and Goat Cheese

Stuffed vegetables don’t show up much in restaurants, here or in Italy. But turn the pages of a cookbook or food magazine meant for home cooks and it becomes clear that Italians will stuff just about anything. Bell peppers, tomatoes,  eggplant, artichokes and squash (including patty pans and zucchini) are seeded, scooped or otherwise emptied [...]

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Mon, October 27 2014 » Fruits and Vegetables, Grains, Italian ingredients, Uncategorized » No Comments

Chickpea “Pizza” with Mushrooms and Tomatoes

My favorite dish during a four-day stay in Vancouver:  a crisp chickpea-flour flatbread topped with sautéed local chanterelles, buffalo mozzarella and luscious heirloom tomatoes. The chef of Cioppino’s Mediterranean Grill, Pino Posteraro, was looking to do something different, he told us, and he succeeded. Plus, for those who care, the chickpea flour makes this dish [...]

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Thu, September 18 2014 » Fruits and Vegetables, Grains, Italian food, Italian ingredients, Pizza, restaurants, Uncategorized » No Comments

Rice Salad, a Summer Tradition

I wasn’t thinking about rice salad until I read the latest post on Gastronauta, my favorite Italian food site. Blogger Cristina Rombola talks about her family’s take on this summer classic, so easy to stash in the fridge for snacking or pack for beach trips and picnics. Now I can’t wait to try their rice [...]

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Thu, June 19 2014 » Fruits and Vegetables, Grains, Italian food, Italian ingredients, Italian lifestyle, salads, Uncategorized » No Comments