Monday, January 22, 2018


If you love the woody flavor of cremini mushrooms, vinaigrette, and Pecorino Romano cheese, you will love this mushroom salad.

8 oz cremini mushrooms,
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
Zest and juice of ½ lemon
¼ t red pepper flakes
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 T Italian parsley, chopped
1 oz Pecorino Romano cheese, shaved

Wipe mushrooms clean. Trim the very ends off and thinly slice.
Place in a bowl and set aside.

In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, and red pepper flakes.
Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Place mushrooms on a large platter and drizzle dressing over.
Sprinkle with parsley and shaved Romano cheese.

Serves 4


For many years, I tried to find the maiden name of Caterina (Catherine) Casazza. One of my husband's cousins sent us this photo and told us her maiden name was also Casazza.
Her parents were Antonio and Maria Casazza. Caterina is the girl second from the left, standing.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018


Ernesto Noviello (Ernest Novello) was born in the little village of Montefalcione on 2 Aug 1895.  He was only fourteen years old when he first arrived in New York on 12 May 1910 as a stowaway...he claimed with a twinkle in his eyes. He and his older brother, Nazareno, (Nat) finally arrived in New York on 28 Feb 1913 on the ship "Cedric" from Napoli, Italy. Ernest was 17 and Nat was 21.

Saturday, January 13, 2018


Shrimp come in so many sizes and are usually sold by count per pound. Here is a helpful guide. 
Extra Jumbo = 16-20 
Jumbo = 21-25 
Extra Large = 26-30 
Large = 31-35 
Medium Large = 36-40 
Medium = 41-50 
Small = 51-60 
Extra Small = 61-70.
Serve the baked scampi with a green salad and crusty bread and of course a glass of vino bianco.  

½ cup panko bread crumbs
1 t freeze-dried or finely chopped fresh oregano
6 T unsalted butter
2 T extra-light olive oil or avocado oil
1 medium shallot, diced
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 t red pepper flakes
½ cup dry white wine
Grated zest and juice of ½ large lemon
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 lb extra large or large shrimp, peeled and deveined, tails left on
¼ cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
¼ cup chopped Italian parsley
Lemon wedges, for serving

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Mix the bread crumbs and oregano together in a small bowl.

In a small saucepan, melt the butter with the oil and sauté the shallot for 3 minutes.
Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook another minute.
Add the wine, lemon zest, and lemon juice.
Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Arrange shrimp in two individual baking dishes.
Pour the butter mixture over the shrimp, top with bread crumb mixture, and sprinkle on the grated Parmigiano cheese.

Place dishes on a baking sheet and bake for 15 to 18 minutes, until hot and bubbly.

Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve with lemon wedges.

Serves 2 as a dinner
Serves 4 as a first course (in smaller baking dishes)