Thursday, December 8, 2022


Here is another classic Italian-American breakfast...eggs in tomato sauce with grated cheese and grilled Italian bread. You can use any good-quality marinara sauce from your grocery store or use my Casa Marinara Sauce (see recipe, page 64 in my cookbook) or Casa Tomato Sauce (see recipe, page 65 in my cookbook). Uova in Purgatorio.

1 cup good-quality prepared marinara or tomato sauce 
2 large eggs, preferably free-range
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Spoon a little sauce into two small ovenproof dishes or skillets. 

Break eggs into two small bowls.

Make a slight clearing in the center of the sauce by scraping with a spoon.
Carefully slide the eggs into the sauce and spoon more sauce around the eggs, but not on top.

Season to taste with salt and pepper and grated Parmigiano cheese.

Place dishes or skillets on a baking sheet. 

Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, until eggs are set and yolks are still soft.

Serve with crusty grilled Italian bread and additional grated Parmigiano cheese.
Serves 2

Note: You can make the recipe using two eggs for each serving—just use larger baking dishes.


Thursday, December 1, 2022


These Italian Christmas cookies do not contain butter, flour, or egg yolks and are another Christmas family favorite. They are so easy to make and totally delicious. You can also replace the vanilla extract with almond extract and replace the pecans for almonds. Save your yolks covered in the refrigerator for another recipe.

Lee's Kitchen Tips:

Make sure your mixing bowl is impeccably clean or the eggs whites will not form into stiff peaks.

5 large egg whites, room temperature
¼ t cream of tartar, optional
¾ cup granulated sugar
1 t pure vanilla extract
1½ cups chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 225 degrees F.

Beat egg whites in a large bowl until foamy. 
Add cream of tartar and beat until soft peaks form.
Gradually add sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.
Beat in vanilla extract. 
Remove bowl from mixer and mix in nuts with a spoon.

Drop by a rounded tablespoon onto baking sheets lightly sprayed with cooking oil or line with parchment paper.
Bake for 45 minutes. Turn off oven and let meringues stay in the oven for 1 hour, or until completely cooled.

Store in an airtight container.

Makes 5 to 6 dozen.


My mother-in-law gave me this recipe. I make them every Christmas. My husband, son, and daughter would be very disappointed if I didn't make them every year.

1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
2 t pure vanilla extract
1 cup sifted confectioners’ sugar
2 ½ level cups all-purpose flour
¼ t salt
1 cup finely chopped pecans
Confectioners’ sugar for coating cookies

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter until fluffy. 
Add vanilla and sugar and beat to combine. 
Add flour and salt and continue to beat.
Mix in pecans with a spoon.
Form into small balls and place on two cookie sheets.

Bake for 15 to 17 minutes.

Let cool and roll in additional confectioners' sugar. You can also pour confectioners' sugar into a paper bag and gently toss cookies until well coated.

Store in an airtight container.

Makes about 5 dozen.