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Archive for the ‘Food’ Category

Italian Americans Lidia Matticchio Bastianich, Ennio Caretto, and  Cesare De Carlo were honored by the Italian Government at the Festa della Repubblica  held at the Italian Embassy in Washington, DC.  Italian Ambassador Giulio Terzi noted in bestowing the awards, that Lidia

Ennio Caretto, Cesare De Carlo, Lidia Matticchio Bastianich

Matticchio Bastanich was being honored for being the “guru” of the Italian cuisine in the United States.  Journalists Ennio Caretto, Washington correspondent for the Corriere della Sera and Cesare De Carlo correspondent for the Quotidiano Nazionale were honored for their contributions in writing about America. Read Ambassador Terzi speech at CiaoAmerica.net

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Official Launch in New York City on January 13-14

 Hundreds of chefs in more than 50 countries will be cooking tagliatelle al ragù alla Bolognese simultaneously on January 17, 2010, in celebration of International Day of Italian Cuisines. Each year, chefs around the world prepare an authentic Italian dish to promote and maintain the identity of Italian cuisine on international markets. “The International Day of Italian Cuisines is without a doubt a celebration of Italian flavors and culinary culture,” says food writer Rosario Scarpato. Read more . . .>>

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Joe Bruno

Joe Bruno

Last Monday, former N.Y. State Senate majority leader, Joseph L. Bruno was convicted on two federal corruption charges. The testimony and evidence introduced at his trial suggested that he used public institutions and resources for private gains.  “The prosecutors and agents involved in this case take no pleasure from what the trial revealed about the culture of the N.Y. State Senate under the leadership of Joseph L. Bruno,” said U.S. Attorney Andrew Baxter.  Bruno, 80, was born in  Glens Falls, N.Y., and was first Italian American elected to the N.Y. Senate in 1976.

On Tuesday, in Massachusetts, Michael Capuano, a member of the House of Representatives, sought to win the Democratic primary for Senator Kennedy’s vacant seat but pulled in only 28% of the votes. He was not the only Italian American in the democratic primary.  In fact, with the exception of the winner, they were all Italian Americans.   Stephen Pagliuca, owner of the Boston Celtics, brought up his Italian American roots during his campaign; he got 12 % of the votes. The third candidate,  Alan Khazei, who takes his last name from his Iranian father,  played up the fact that his mother was Italian.  He received 13% of the votes.  If  they had all agreed to support one Italian American candidate, that person would likely have won.  Instead, the three-way split left Martha Coakley with 47% of the votes and a ticket to the U.S. Senate.

On a more positive note this week,  Italian American  brothers, Michael and Bryan Voltaggio showed America what good cooking is all about! Michael, a chef in L.A., took the top prize on Bravo’s TV show Top Chef.  Bryan, owner of Volt restaurant in Frederick, Md, ranked in the top three. The Voltaggios grew up in Frederick, the sons of a clerical worker and a state trooper whose moonlighting in hotel security apparently got them into the Holiday Inn kitchen as teens.  According to the judges, Michael’s fried broccoli was the highlight of  the final meal.  For those of  us who grew up in Italian  families, where fried broccoli were a delicacy, it was a fitting season ending.

One final note: on Friday, John Mancini, editor-in-chief of Newsday, “resigned” after 2o years at the paper. Rumors are that he was pushed out by Cablevision, the paper’s owner, after a reputed tussle with the company’s head.

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Time for a break!  Italian Americans love figs.  As those of us lucky enough to have a fig tree or two on their premises know, there is nothing like a sumptuous fig, freshly picked early on a summer morning. Nothing. Years figgy_berto_6297ago, when we first moved to Washington D.C., we noticed a few fig trees growing in Chinatown.  Of course, Chinatown used to be Washington’s Little Italy.  That is, before Chinatown became apartment-town. 

Ever since, we have been trying our best to spread the joys of a fig tree in your garden and have eagerly provided cuttings of fig trees to everyone we know– extending as far as Canada.  We have several varieties of figs growing in our own garden, including one that ripens late in the fall (allegedly smuggled from Sicily).  Unfortunately, it tends to rain in the fall and figs and rain don’t mix.  However, over the years we have discovered that once our animal friends taste the figs, they love them — even in the fall!  That includes the legions of squirrels and, of late, we have noticed another pretty face in our garden enjoying our figs.  Life is beautiful — especially in the garden of an Italian American with fig trees. Ciao Italian America!

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Time for a break!  Italian Americans love figs.  As those of us lucky enough to have a fig tree or two on their premises know, there is nothing like a sumptuous fig, freshly picked early on a summer morning. Nothing. Years figgy_berto_6297ago, when we first moved to Washington D.C., we noticed a few fig trees growing in Chinatown.  Of course, Chinatown used to be Washington’s Little Italy.  That is, before Chinatown became apartment-town. 

Ever since, we have been trying our best to spread the joys of a fig tree in your garden and have eagerly provided cuttings of fig trees to everyone we know– extending as far as Canada.  We have several varieties of figs growing in our own garden, including one that ripens late in the fall (allegedly smuggled from Sicily).  Unfortunately, it tends to rain in the fall and figs and rain don’t mix.  However, over the years we have discovered that once our animal friends taste the figs, they love them — even in the fall!  That includes the legions of squirrels and, of late, we have noticed another pretty face in our garden enjoying our figs.  Life is beautiful — especially in the garden of an Italian American with fig trees. Ciao Italian America!

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