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March 8, 2012

Congrats, LCA!


Congrats to

Lidia Celebrates America: Holiday Tables and Traditions

for winning a Silver Telly Award!

With nearly 11,000 entries from all 50 states and numerous countries, this is truly an honor.

The Telly Awards was founded in 1979 and is the premier award honoring outstanding local, regional, and cable TV commercials and programs, the finest video and film productions, and online commercials, video and films.  Winners represent the best work of the most respected advertising agencies, production companies, television stations, cable operators, and corporate video departments in the world.

For its 33rd season, The Telly Awards once again joined forces with YouTube to give the public the power to view and rate videos submitted as part of the People’s Telly Awards.  In addition to recognition from the Silver Telly Council, the judging panel that selects the Telly Awards winners, the Internet community helps decide the People’s Telly Awards winners.

A prestigious judging panel of over 500 accomplished industry professionals, each a past winner of a Silver Telly and a member of The Silver Telly Council, judged the competition, upholding the historical standard of excellence that Telly represents.  The Silver Council evaluated entries to recognize distinction in creative work – entries do not compete against each other – rather entries are judged against a high standard of merit.  Less than 10% of entries are chosen as Winners of the Silver Telly, our highest honor.  Approximately 25% of entries are chosen as Winners of the Bronze Telly.

“The Telly Awards has a mission to honor the very best in film and video,” said Linda Day, Executive Director of the Telly Awards. ”

To find out more about the Telly Awards visit www.tellyawards.com.

March 7, 2012

La Festa Della Donna


March 8th marks International Women’s Day, which in Italy we call La Festa Della Donna. International Women’s Day was said to have begun in the early 1900′s. Since then it has grown into a global day of recognition and celebration across the world.

Many organizations have observe this day by hosting large events to honor women and their achievements throughout history. The symbol of this day is the yellow mimosa flower, and in Italy, men are encouraged to give these flowers to all the important women in their lives. Of course, men should show their love to the women in their lives every day of the year, but Italian women like to have a special day to celebrate themselves and their fellow women. As you all know, here in the United States we dedicate the entire month of March to Women’s History Month.

To celebrate this special day I recommend you make a traditional mimosa cake, an Italian lemon-flavored sponge cake layered with a cream filling. Enjoy!

March 6, 2012

Wine Pairing 101


Many books have been written on the subject and listings and tables have been created, but when I pair food with wine I look for the most intense qualities of one or the other and then try to bring them into balance. For example, if there is a fatty component in the food then an acidic wine will balance it. If there is an intense complexity of herbs and spices with meats, then a complex red will counterbalance that complexity. If there is a pristine fresh fish preparation, then a crisp, fruity aromatic white will do. With a robust tomato pasta sauce, a robust fruity Chianti will be just fine.

 

Do not amplify or accentuate the same dominating qualities in food by choosing a wine with the same qualities. You can work backward if you have good wines in your cellar, then choose the food to complement them. Of course, the better the food, the better the wine and the better the experience.

 

To do just a pairing, you need to have tasted the wine before so that you can best match it. Can wine be enjoyed without premeditation of food? Yes—I love a good Brunello with a hamburger.

 

February 22, 2012

Skiing in Val Gardena


Having lunch on the slopes at a baita with Tanya and the family. Val Gardena is a beautiful valley in the Dolomites–it’s worth visiting year-round.

Horse and buggy rides at Val Gardena

Snowshoeing with friends in Val Gardena

 

February 21, 2012

Italy in February: Venice and Bologna


Celebrating Carnevale and my birthday in misty Venice with Joe and my grandchildren

Traditional Carnevale costumes in Venice

View from the top of San Petronio in Bologna

A little shopping in Bologna

Il Sassolungo from Val Gardena, where I'm meeting up with Tanya and the family

February 17, 2012

Goats: My Gift to My Mother – by Tanya


My mother is the easiest person to buys gift for.  She appreciates whatever gift you give her, from the classic silk scarf to the practical nightshirt.

I usually begin thinking about what to get her shortly after the new year.  I try and be creative, sometimes succeeding and sometimes falling back on the old staple: Her perfume. It’s the same one she has worn for the past 45 years.  In fact, anywhere in the world, when I smell that scent, she immediately comes to mind. I even know if she has made it to a meeting before me by her perfume scent leading the way.

This year I was lucky enough to stumble across the perfect birthday gift for my mother.  While watching Ellen Degeneres this past week, I was able to watch the rescue story of six beautiful goats by a wonderful organization, the Gentle Barn.  Goats are probably my mother’s favorite animal.  Growing up she always had pet goats and even today has a goat back in her hometown that she enjoys visiting with and milking.  I knew immediately that helping to feed and care for these goats would be the perfect birthday gift.  Hopefully she will get to visit them.

The Gentle Barn rescues many wonderful animals and I highly suggest visiting their website, the animals are gorgeous and sweet.



February 14, 2012

Wine pairing for Valentine’s Day


Regardless of who you’re celebrating with today, I’m sure you’re going to want a little something sweet. While chocolate is one of my favorite ways to indulge, (and as you all know, Grandma certainly has a sizable sweet tooth), I also love to end a special meal with a good dessert wine. Here’s a little bit of background in case you want to try matching your dessert with a little vino.

The production and enjoyment of Italian dessert wines spans the whole peninsula. In Piemonte, the Moscato—a very aromatic and slightly bubbly white—is wonderful with ricotta dishes. The Picolit from Friuli, of very limited availability but extraordinary in floral intensity and flavor with a  balanced acidity, is excellent with Baked Crepes with Ricotta, Angels’ Kisses, and Apple Strudel. The Torcolato by Maculan from the Veneto, with complex flavors of apricots and acacia, is superb served with the Blueberry Apricot Frangipane Tart.  Malvasia delle Lipari, an exceptional product from the Aeolian islands, has an intense aroma and flavor of dried apricots and figs—it is also splendid with the Blueberry Apricot Frangipane Tart. Most of these wines can be enjoyed in leisurely after-dinner conversation with some biscotti, hence their Italian name, “vini da meditazione“—wines to sip slowly and meditate on the sweetness of life.

A snapshot of the Bastianich vineyards--now that would be a romantic Valentine's Day spot!


February 8, 2012

My take on Italian sparkling wines


Typically in Italy with hors d’oeuvres and antipasti, sparkling or white wines are served as an aperitif. Prosecco di Conegliano-Valdobiadenne is one of those sparkling aperitifs. In Italy today, it is in vogue to begin the meal with a glass of Prosecco or spumante; in fact, most restaurants will serve it imiediately as the customer is seated. Some good producers are Zardetto and Vincenzo Toffoli. Of course, I also love Bastianich Flor prosecco!

Prosecco is a lightly sparkling wine which is predominantly made from prosecco grapes but Chardonnay or Pinot Bianco can be added. Golden yellow in color, it has an aroma of apples, honey, and acacia flowers. It is dry but quite inviting, with a pronounced but balanced acidity.

 

Today, Italy is producing some excellent sparkling wines, especially from the Franciacorta area in Lombardy. Vinified in the traditional metodo champenoise, they  usually are vivacious and bubbly with a pleasant, balanced acidity and the mellow flavors of yeast. Sparkling wine is excellent with crustaceans, and it also makes an excellent companion to prosciutto. Some of my favorite producers are Bruno Giacosa, Bellavista, Ferrari, Castello Banfi, and Ca’ del Bosco.

January 31, 2012

An Interview with Lidia


Reuters interviewed Lidia about her latest book, Lidia’s Italy in America.

Read it here!

January 30, 2012

Auguri, Erminia!


Erminia turns 92! Buon compleanno!

Food Books and Dvds Tableware

Lidia's Italy in America
Lidia brings viewers on a road trip into the heart of Italian-American cooking.
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Lidia's Pasta and Sauces
Enjoy Them Now!
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Lidia's Stoneware Collection

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