I’m about to confess something that will shock the conscience of Italian families everywhere – I am the descendant of Italian immigrants and never cooked an ounce of Italian food until I was over thirty. There, I said it. For those who grew up in and around Italian neighborhoods, such a confession is hard to believe. When so much of Italian culture is based on culinary traditions and inspiration from childhood memories of cooking with family such an anomaly is unfathomable. I guess I was a late bloomer. But this is not about me. It’s about cooking with Gus – my Italian grandpa – Augusto Ricardo Ciriello.
My grandpa Gus Read More
So. . . it won’t surprise you to know that we’ve been pretty busy for the past several months. We’ve been moving our business and our residence from 200 miles away, doing the interior buildout of the new shop, getting permits from numerous regulatory agencies, placing orders for, taking and merchandising inventory. . . and more. Which is the long way of saying that we haven’t had the time to cook as much as we’d like.
But that’s not to say that we haven’t had the time to eat as well as we’d like to. As you’ve heard us say over and over, the beauty of Italian cooking is that Read More
Making your own vanilla extract is really easy. All you need is vanilla beans, vodka, a jar, and time.
Get 4 fresh, good quality vanilla beans. We prefer Madagascar vanilla beans because they have the best flavor, but Mexican beans are also good, because they have a dark color which helps with the infusion.
Use an 8 ounce jar that’s tall enough to hold your vanilla beans. If it’s not tall enough, you can cut the beans in half. And if the jar is smaller or bigger than 8 ounces, just use proportionately fewer or more beans.
Put the 4 beans in the jar and Read More
So now Halloween is over and you’re left with a bunch of candy sprinkles. What to do? Make a cocktail of course! Seasonal sprinkles punch up an ordinary cocktail. It’s a fun and easy way to add a festive touch to any gathering!
You’ll need –
- Seasonal Halloween or fall candy sprinkles in plate or shallow bowl
- Chocolate chips in microwave safe dish or shallow bowl (Make sure the container is wider than your serving glass!)
- Your martini of choice (We’ll post our recommended recipes later this winter, but any festive drink or punch will do, with or without Read More
The temperature has finally dropped and fall is in the air! Pumpkins, autumnal colors and seasonal cocktails fill our home. We know the holidays can be stressful so here are some easy entertaining tips to take you through Thanksgiving stress free!
Elevate cocktails with elegant paper napkins! They bring a perfect seasonal touch to any gathering-large or small. It’s a sophisticated addition to your party that won’t break the bank!
For seasonal decor, think outside the box! Those Ramekins hiding in your cabinet aren’t just for soufflés and creme brûlée. Adorable pumpkin ramekins pull double duty as Read More
The other day, we found ourselves with a leftover cedar board and the need for some storage at the shop. An hour and one simple woodworking project later, we’d turned our leftovers into a cute storage solution. Here’s how (don’t let the length of this post scare you – it’s an easy project, just with a lot of pictures):
The basic idea for the crates is to cut boards to length and attach them to corner posts. This makes a square without a bottom. Then you make a bottom by attaching boards to a pair of thin “skids” and then attach the bottom panel to the sides.
If you like prosecco, or any cocktail that bubbles, then keep reading.
On our last trip to New York we stayed at the lovely Conrad New York hotel in lower Manhattan. Having logged more work related travel miles than we care to admit, we are seasoned, jaded travelers and nothing impresses us. Seriously, nothing.
But we Love. This. Place.
Immaculate, stylish rooms, yummy breakfast in the bistro, friendly staff, and fun rooftop bar with stunning views. (No, the Conrad did not pay us to say this). We spent each night enjoying a cocktail at the Loopy Doopy rooftop bar – home of the prosecco and ice pop cocktail! So, as Read More
You’ve heard us say it time and time again. To us, classic Italian cooking means taking great ingredients and not screwing them up. And one of the best ingredients can be yours, year-round, in a can. You’ve undoubtedly eaten Parmagiano Reggiano, probably nibbled on Proscutto di Parma, and may have had great, cold pressed extra virgin Italian Olive Oil. But the odds are that you don’t cook with DOP San Marzano tomatoes. And that’s a shame.
San Marzanos are long, thin tomatoes, with a thick wall of flesh and not as many seeds as a typical garden tomato. “DOP” San Marzano tomatoes are Read More
Spring is the season for getting organized! We hear from a lot of customers that they are short on space so we decided to share some space saving ideas in a series of blogs dedicated to artful storage. Our first secret is that we love storage as display.
Think vertical! Every day objects become stylish vignettes when stored in these cute metals baskets. Plus, it frees up valuable shelf space. Roll burlap placemats and pair with lemons to create an inviting display that is both practical and pretty.
Artfully arranged garden supplies are ready for tending to Read More
Spring is in the air! The warm breeze and longer hours of sunshine welcome the first signs of spring. Of course, Easter brunch, bunnies and spring entertaining are on our minds! So here are a few entertaining tips to brighten and inspire your spring!
Think outside the box on how everyday objects can be repurposed. These pastel cupcake stands make a perfect pedestal for candles. Simply place a few in the middle of the table for a festive centerpiece.
Headed to Easter at family or friends house? Candles boxed in adorable seasonal packaging makes a lovely Read More
If you ask an Italian their favorite place to eat they will probably say their Nonna’s (Grandma’s) house. I couldn’t agree more.
My favorite meal didn’t come from a fancy restaurant with a Michelin star and my favorite chef cannot be found judging a competition on Food Network. That’s because the best food I ever ate was in Madison, New Jersey in my Aunt Flo’s kitchen.
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The plane touched down on a rainy night in an exotic place I would later come to know as the Newark airport. Uncle Stanley was there to meet us and take us back to the house in Madison where he lived Read More