1 lb. zucchini
1 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
2 tbs. vinegar
1 sprig mint, finely chopped

How to make the Marinated Zucchini:

Wash, slice, pat dry and fry the zucchini in oil. When golden brown remove from oil and rid of excess fat on paper towel. Arrange in a serving platter and flavor with vinegar mixed with chopped mint. Salt and pepper to taste.

Serves 4



For the zucchini:
2 lbs. zucchini
juice of 1 lemon
1 medium chopped onion
4 tbsp. butter
4 oz. grated Pecorino Toscano cheese
4 oz. sliced Pecorino Toscano cheese

For the bechamel:
2 tbsp. flour
2 tbsp. butter
3/4 cup milk
salt and white pepper

How to make Baked Zucchini with Pecorino Toscano Cheese :

Wash and remove the ends of the zucchini and cut them into slices. In a pan brown the chopped onion in butter and then add the sliced zucchini. Cook until almost tender.

Prepare the bechamel sauce in a double boiler. First melt the butter, then add the flour, always stirring with a wooden spoon. When you have a paste add the warm milk. Keep on stirring until you have a homogeneous cream. Add salt, peper and nutmeg to taste.

In a buttered baking dish layer the zucchini, the bechamel sauce and grated Pecorino Toscano cheese. Cover the top with the sliced cheese. Bake in a 350’F oven for 20 minutes or until the top is well browned.

Serves 4



  • 9 medium-sized zucchini
  • A six-ounce (150 g) can of black olives packed in brine
  • 2 ounces (50 g) salted capers, rinsed
  • 6 anchovy filets, boned and rinsed
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • A tablespoon of minced parsley
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

How to make the Baked Zucchini:

Wash and dry the zucchini and trim their tips, then cut them lengthwise into 1/4-inch (1/2 cm) slices; but the slices in a colander and dust them with salt to draw out some of their water.

Pit and chop the olives, mince the capers, and mince the anchovy filets. Combine these ingredients with the parsley and the garlic.

Preheat your oven to 360 F (180 C).

Set a few tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet and set it on the fire; while it’s heating rinse the salt off the zucchini slices and pat them dry. Sauté the zucchini slices, turning them to color both sides, and in the meantime lightly oil an oven dish. As the zucchini are browned transfer them to the dish; season them with the olive mixture, a little more olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste, and heat them through in the oven for about 20 minutes.

Serves 6



4 egg yolks
4 tbs. sugar
4 tbs. Marsala

How to make the Eggnog with Marsala:

Warm the eggs yolks and the sugar in a double boiler over a low heat, and then whip them with a wire whisk. Pour Marsala into the yolks, drop by drop, and keep beating.

The mixture will begin to foam and then swell into a light soft cream. Do not overcook or it will collapse.

Cinnamon and grated lemon rind may be added before pouring in the Marsala, and this liqueur in turn can be replaced with a high-quality white, sweet, dry or sparkling wine. Brandy or cherry brandy may also be added.

Serves 4



  • 1 ½ cup dry lentils (there are many varieties of lentils. I like to use the small brown lentils from Castelluccio- Italy)
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 clove or garlic minced
  • 1 potato cut in cubes
  • ½ cup of sweet cherry tomatoes or Roma tomatoes chopped
  • ¼ cup of roasted chestnuts
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Salt and pepper
  • Olive oil

How to make Zuppa di lenticchie e castagne:

Put the lentils in a large pot and cover with water. Add the onions, garlic, potato, tomatoes, chestnuts, bay leaf, salt and pepper and a tablespoon of olive oil. Cook for about 20 minutes and adjust with salt and pepper if necessary.  Let it sit and cool down for 15 minutes. Remove the bay leaf. To obtain a creamy velvety consistency use  an electric immersion blender .

You can serve it warm or at room temperature. I like to add 2 or 3 tablespoons of cooked brown rice to make this dish richer and have a crunchiness while you’re eating.

Advice: Even if there is no need to soak lentils, I like to soak my lentils for 8 hours and then rinse them under running water. It makes them easier for your body to digest.

Tip: Try to freeze it if there is any leftover. It’s a very handy meal to have in your freezer when you don’t feel like cooking or want to have a comfort soup. I usually take it out from the freezer first thing in the morning and by lunch time it’s ready to eat!


Serves 4

Regional recipe from Abruzzo

Zuppa di spinaci e parmigiano


1 kg spinach
4 potatoes
125 cl milk cream
160 g Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Traditional Balsamic Vinegar from Modena or Reggio Emilia
1/2 onion
15 g butter

How to make the Zuppa di spinaci e parmigiano:

Julienne cut the onion and saute’ in butter. Clean the spinach, wash it and add to the onion.
Saute’ the spinach until limp without covering, add the thinly sliced potatoes, a pinch of salt and lastly the freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.

Cook for a few minutes and add enough water to cover the ingredients. Leave to boil for 15 minutes, then mix the ingredients in a blender. Add the milk cream and mix.

Serve the spinach soup and decorate the dish with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese petal-shaped slivers and a dash of Traditional Balsamic Vinegar.

Serves 4

Regional recipe from Emilia-Romagna

Zuppa di Cardi


a large thistle (about 800 g in weight)
2 tablespoons tomato paste
4 slices of bread
2 liters vegetable stock
40 g of grated parmesan and pecorino cheese and mixed
2 tablespoons flour
half a lemon
30 g butter

How to make the Thistle Soup:

Clean the card, delete the external ribs, cut into chunks and put the other in water acidulated with lemon juice. Boil plenty of water, pour in the flour, add a pinch of salt and thistles and cook for about 15 minutes.

Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the drained thistles and let them cook for 5 minutes. Add the tomato sauce, pour the boiling broth and cook on low heat for about 30 minutes. Cut the bread into cubes, toast under the grill of the oven and sprinkle the soup with cheese.

Serves 4

Regional recipe from Abruzzo

Zuppa di ortiche


Conchigliette160 g
Ortiche 600 g
Pancetta salata 100 g
Pomodori 3
Brodo 1 l
Cipolla 1/2
Burro 1 Noce
Sale q.b.
Pepe q.b

How to make the Zuppa di ortiche:

Grate finely chopped onion into butter, combine thin chopped bacon, chopped tomatoes and nettle leaves and bake for 4 ‘.

Add broth and cook over medium heat for 30 minutes, adding salt and pepper.

Cook  and pour into the broth.


Serves 4

regional recipe from Molise

Zite al pomodoro e tonno


320 g of small zite
400 g of tomato passata
80 g of tuna in oil
2 anchovies in salt
1 onion
1 garlic clove
4 spoons of olive oil
salt and pepper

How to make the Short pasta with tomato and tuna:

The dish will be better characterized if you add a spoon of desalted capers in the saucepan containing oil.
Preparation time 10′
Cooking time 35′.
Peel and chop garlic and onion; desalt capers, debone and cut them in pieces; put these ingredients in a saucepan with oil and let them sweat for some minutes on a low flame, stirring with a wooden spoon so to mix the pieces of anchovies.
Add tomato passata, a pinch of salt and one of pepper, and allow to cook, always on a low flame and by covering the saucepan, for 20 minutes by adding the drained and crumbled tuna after 10 minutes.
Cook zite in plenty of boiling salted water, drain and put them on a course dish, dress them with the prepared sauce, mix and serve.

Serves 4

Regional recipe from Sicily

Riso con verdure e parmigiano


300 g wild rice
50 g courgettes
25 g shallots
200 g ripe tomatoes
10 g pine nuts
100 g champignon mushrooms
some tender baby onions
250 g milk cream
50 g mustard grains
50 g butter
100 g Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
salt and pepper

How to make the Riso con verdure e parmigiano:

Boil the wild rice in salted water for about 40 minutes. Sauté the vegetables in butter and a pinch of salt and pepper. Drain the rice and pour it into the frying pan with the vegetables and add the pine nuts.
Prepare a sauce by slowly heating the milk cream, the mustard grains and the freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Salt and pepper.
Arrange the rice on a platter and accompany with the sauce.

Serves 4

Regional recipe from Emilia-Romagna