Tradition says all sorts of things are necessary to make good pesto, from (pricey) Ligurian olive oil to pecorino sardo—not romano—cheese. What's the truth to all this? We put pesto dogma to the test.
'Italian Food' on Serious Eats
This pesto sauce, through rounds and rounds of testing, has been honed to the perfect ratio, ingredients, and method. And while a mortar and pestle is a bit of work, the superior sauce it produces compared to a food processor can't be argued. This is the true, best pesto. Using a food processor, this ratio of ingredients will still produce a great sauce.
Editor's Note: Whether you're a tourist or an office worker in downtown Chicago, you can get sick of eating at chain restaurants all day. So we've started a series to get you the lowdown on where to find a great...
One of the biggest brunch surprises in the city may very well be what's going on at Cicchetti right now, where the brand new brunch menu features a smattering of outre Italian dishes alongside re-imagined, Italian-tinged American favorites.
At what point does a place become more than the sum of its parts? At what point do you want to call it great, even if strictly speaking nothing you had was?
The new Soluri & Sons Deli on Halsted Street in Bridgeport has picked up right where it left off. Once a popular stop in the '90s, it has returned with subs that are simple and satisfying.
Eataly's open eateries are themed by different food groups. Noticing long waits for a table at Il Pesce, La Pizza & Pasta, and La Carne, I took one of the plenty open spots in veggie-focused Le Verdure. It was worth the not-wait.
If you consider yourself an Italian sub aficionado—and why wouldn't you want to be?— you probably know the name D'Aamto's well. But recently the bakery decided to stop just being the purveyor of great bread for Italian subs, and started making the subs itself.
There aren't many restaurants that can boast a great Monday lunch crowd, but with simple Italian favorites and a lively atmosphere, I can see why Club Lago has always been a neighborhood favorite.
Eataly Chicago is finally here, and it's hard to imagine a bigger opening in River North this year. You can check it out for yourself on Monday, December 2nd, but until then, take a look at our preview.
Within five minutes of being seated, "Ain't That a Kick in the Head" came over the loudspeaker, as though on cue. Makes sense. Though our server described the restaurant as a "40s and 50s Style Supper Club," she must have meant by way of Las Vegas, not Wisconsin.
I'm not sure the absolutely massive Italian sausage sandwich will clear up all the questions I have about Il Vicinato's, but I did care less about finding out after finishing it off.
I can think of no better breakfast of champions than a heaping platter of cornetti followed by an egg-adorned pizza and a bombolini (or several). Such trappings can be had at Bar Toma, the mod Italian temple doing masterful, innovative things with dough at the brunch hour.
Vegetables are truly the heart and soul of Italian cuisine; in a country with a vibrant year-round growing season and a history of die-hard regional cooking, it only makes sense that the freshest vegetables of the week are highlighted at each and every table. The Glorious Vegetables of Italy, the third in a series of books by Italian home cooking maestro, Dominica Marchetti, embraces just this concept.
Octopus is first tenderized, then lightly grilled and dressed with lemon and olive oil.
Franco Pedrini started growing biodynamic heirloom wheat back when 'heirloom' wasn't cool and 'biodynamic' was laughed at. For twenty years, he defied his neighbors and labored on his farm and pasta business with his wife and three sons. The resulting pastas are hearty and flavorful, not to mention easy on the gluten intolerant. You can't yet buy his San Cristoforo pasta in the US, but we hope this family's rich story will satiate your appetite.
At this late stage in the game is there anyone in the world beside hard-line Italians who doesn't know that you can make a perfect bowl luscious, al dente, perfectly mantecato risotto without preheating your broth or stirring constantly? That said, I've still got a ton of risotto questions left unanswered, so this week I decided to test just about every aspect of risotto I could think of to separate fact from fiction. Which type of rice is best? How much do you really need to stir? Is toasting necessary? And what about mounting with cream? 6.6 pounds of risotto later, I've got a few answers.
Yesterday, Starbucks launched a new "breakfast sandwich" called the "piadini," inspired by the Italian flatbread-like "piandina" usually filled with meat and/or cheese and eaten at lunch or snack time. Starbucks' piadina introduction was basically screaming for a comparison, and once we got real Italians involved, the taste test results weren't pretty. Initial reaction from Giancarlo Quadalti and Maurizio DeRosa: skepticism. A call up to chef Giancarlo Quadalti of New York's Teodora, Celeste, Bianca, and Fiore—he is from Ravenna, Italy, the home of the piadina—inspired a serious chuckle on the other line. He was equal parts intrigued and frightened. Starbucks is really attempting what sweet, hunched-over Italian women make at streetside kiosks? When we brought him and his good friend,...