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August 8, 2011

Lidia’s Italy in America heads to Philadelphia


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In anticipation of Lidia’s return to Public Television and the release of her newest book, we’re writing weekly features on some of the great cities Lidia visits in Lidia’s Italy in America.   In addition to sharing a few fun facts, we’ll give you a sneak peek at new recipes and behind-the-scenes photos from each episode.

We’re kicking off with the city of Philadelphia–the first episode to air in September–but stay tuned for upcoming posts featuring California, New Orleans, Pittsburgh, and many more!

Lidia’s Italy in America begins to air  September 10th, and the accompanying cookbook, filled with more than 175 recipes, will be released October 25th. Be sure to check out the discounted presale!


Weekly Featured Recipe

Chicken Trombino, as served at Ralph’s Italian Restaurant

Right next to the Sarcone bakery is Ralph’s Italian Restaurant, opened in 1900 by Francesco Dispigno. This institution of Italian-American cuisine claims to be the oldest Italian restaurant in America still run by the same family. Lidia and Tanya ate the chicken Trombino, a recipe that has been on the menu for as long as the current owners, Jimmy and Eddie Rubino, can remember. Get a sneak peek at this Lidia’ Italy in America recipe on Lidia’s website!


Fun Facts about Italian-American Philadelphia

Italians have been part of the life of Philadelphia since colonial times. Italian immigration to Philadelphia was one of the earliest waves, and in the mid-eighteenth century consisted mainly of intellectuals, artists, and entrepreneurs…In the late nineteenth century, many wealthy Italians left Italy for political reasons and came to Philadelphia, followed by blue-collar workers looking for work and opportunity.

Lidia’s Italy in America

The 9th Street Market was and still is a bustling place; home to most hardworking immigrants, this market represented the very essence of Italian culture in Philadelphia. Today, the market is shared with immigrants from other countries but remains a great place to pick up artisanal Italian imports. Some of the best-known shops include D’Angelo Brothers Meat market, Claudio Specialty Foods, Sarcone and Son’s Bakery, and Di Bruno Brothers’.


Behind the Scenes in Philadelphia

The second generation running L. Sarcone & Son's Bakery

Lou Sarcone Sr., running Sarcone & Son's Bakery

Ralph's Restaurant

Ralph's Italian Restaurant

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Fred Landis at Claudio's Specialy Foods on 9th Street

Lidia at D'Angelo Brothers'

Lidia at D'Angelo Brothers'


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August 5, 2011

Lidia’s Photojournal: The Latest from the Adriatic, 8/5



Petar, the local fisherman, delivered these granzevole (spiny crabs) in the morning

Petar, the local fisherman, delivered these granzevole (spiny crabs) in the morning

The granzevole make a great pasta sauce! Served with a bottle of Bastianich Vespa www.bastianich.com

The granzevole make a great pasta sauce! Served with a bottle of Bastianich Vespa www.bastianich.com

Make your own summer seafood dish: Lobster Fra Diavolo with Spaghetti

Mladenka, a local resident, welcomes Lidia's crew to her island

Mladenka, a local resident, welcomes Lidia's crew to her island

A peaceful morning at the bay

The peaceful bay

Evening setting in

Evening setting in

August 2, 2011

What’s for Dinner, Week of 8/1


Dinner is an important part of every day, but I know busy schedules make it hard for families to find time to sit together at the table. Even if you can only manage one family dinner each week, dedicate an hour or two in the evening to chat in the kitchen and over a healthy, home-cooked meal.

Try cooking and eating What’s for Dinner with your family; every Monday I will suggest a simple menu of balanced, family-friendly recipes that are easy and quick to prepare. Whether you decide to follow the menu, use it as a rough guide, or let it inspire you to design your own dinner, I hope you will make some time to enjoy family over a good meal.

lidiaandgrandkids3

Insalata di Zucchini e Pomodorini (Zucchini and Cherry Tomatoes)

Eat seasonally with this healthy summer dish. The secret to bringing out the flavor of the zucchini without making it soggy is to cook it whole for just long enough to soften it. If you don’t have cherry tomatoes, cut regular tomatoes into chunks more or less the size of the sliced zucchini.

Pollo alla Parmigiana (Chicken Parmigiana, New-Style)

This is a more contemporary version of one of the standbys of Italian-American cooking. Instead of coating a thin, breaded and fried chicken cutlet with tomato sauce, I like to top a chicken thigh with sliced fresh tomatoes and slices of fresh mozzarella or Fontina cheese. A light sauce made with fresh tomatoes and basil finishes the plate. Fontina is a mellow, lightly aged cow’s milk cheese that melts beautifully. Take the time to find imported Fontina-you’ll appreciate the creamy difference. You can prepare this dish using veal, turkey or pork cutlets as well.

August 2, 2011

Photo updates from Lidia as she sails the Adriatic, 8/2


Petar, presenting dinner: An 8 kg monkfish!

Petar, presenting lunch: 8 kg of fresh-caught monkfish!

Lunch of fried monkfish (Lidia's favorite parts are cheeks and livers!) with tomato salad and chilled Saivignon: Che felicia!

Lunch of fried monkfish (Lidia's favorite parts are cheeks and livers!) with tomato salad and chilled Sauvignon: Che felicia!

The 51-foot Gib Sea sailboat

The 51-foot Gib Sea sailboat

Taking a dingy to explore Statival, a small bay town of only 7 homes

Taking a dingy to explore Statival, a small bay town of only 7 homes

Fresh figs from the tree in Petar's yard for dessert

Fresh figs from the tree in Petar's yard for dessert

Lidia with the Skipper

Lidia with the Skipper

Fresh-caught and wood-grilled branzino, gilded bass, and a dory fish drizzled with local olive oil--not to mention the sides of boiled potatoes, tomato salad, and shredded white cabbage salad!

Fresh-caught and wood-grilled branzino, gilded bass, and a dory fish drizzled with local olive oil--not to mention the sides of boiled potatoes, tomato salad, and shredded white cabbage salad!

August 1, 2011

Photos from Lidia’s Sailing Adventure, 8/1


Louis, Lidia, Mario, and Wanda (who operates Tasteful Croatian Journeys, www.visitcroatia.com)

Louis, Lidia, Mario, and Wanda (who operates Tasteful Croatian Journeys, www.visitcroatia.com)

Panzanella for dinner, try this recipe at home! http://lidiasitaly.com/recipes/detail/186

Panzanella for dinner, try this recipe at home! http://lidiasitaly.com/recipes/detail/186

Sailing towards the Kornati Islands

Sailing towards the Kornati Islands

Skipper Stipe Vitaljic, one of the best regata skippers in the Dalmation Archipelago (Lidia's skipper of 3 years)

Skipper Stipe Vitaljic, one of the best regata skippers in the Dalmation Archipelago (Lidia's skipper of 3 years)

Biograd Na Moru Port, view from Lidia's hotel

Biograd Na Moru Port, view from Lidia's hotel

Spaghetti with fresh caught sea urchin and some Bastianich Vespa

Spaghetti with fresh caught sea urchin and some Bastianich Vespa

Petar, a local fisherman, shows up with freshly caught whiting

Petar, a local fisherman, shows up with freshly caught whiting

July 29, 2011

Updates from Lidia’s trip to Pula, 7/29


The courtyard in Busoler (Pula, Croatia) at Lidia's grandmother's house

The courtyard in Busoler (Pula, Croatia) at Lidia's grandmother's house

Dinner with friends in Verudella (Pula, Croatia)

Dinner with friends in Verudella (Pula, Croatia)

Verudella (Pula, Croatia)

Verudella (Pula, Croatia)

July 27, 2011

Greetings from Croatia! More photos from Lidia’s travels, 7/27


Temple of Augustus in Pula

Temple of Augustus in Pula

A little chapel hidden in Lidia's olive groves in Pula

A little chapel hidden in Lidia's olive groves in Pula

Dinner at the Valsabbion in Pula

Dinner at the Valsabbion in Pula

Three different delicious olive oil appetizers at the Valsabbion

Three different delicious olive oil appetizers at the Valsabbion

The beautiful coast of Sisano, Istria

The beautiful coast of Sisano, Istria

July 25, 2011

What’s for Dinner, Week of 7/25


Dinner is an important part of every day, but I know busy schedules make it hard for families to find time to sit together at the table. Even if you can only manage one family dinner each week, dedicate an hour or two in the evening to chat in the kitchen and over a healthy, home-cooked meal.

Try cooking and eating What’s for Dinner with your family; every Monday I will suggest a simple menu of balanced, family-friendly recipes that are easy and quick to prepare. Whether you decide to follow the menu, use it as a rough guide, or let it inspire you to design your own dinner, I hope you will make some time to enjoy family over a good meal.


lidiaandgrandkids

Here are a couple of recipes I’m planning to make this week:

Sauteed Zucchini (Zucchine al Tegame)

It’s the season for zucchini. Whether you saute it, grill it, or fry it, make sure you get some of this delicious summer squash while it is at its best.

Farro with Tuna and Tomatoes (Farro al Tonno e Pomodoro)

This was a delicious discovery I made at Le Lampare, a restaurant in Trani on the Adriatic coast. While we will never match the quality of the fresh fish I ate that night, with this recipe you can make a version that is truly delicious in its own right, using good quality canned tuna (packed in olive oil, of course). This is a great dish for summer and can be served as an appetizer or main course.

Peaches in White Wine (Pesche in Vino Bianco)

This is just my own version of macedonia, or, as the French say, macedoine. A simple, refreshing summer dessert, it should be prepared 3 hours ahead of time. Blueberries or strawberries can be substituted for the cherries.

July 25, 2011

Wish you were here! Photos from Lidia’s travels in Istria, 7/25



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Today Lidia is in Istria, Croatia, in the beautiful port city of Vrsar, known for its great seafood and the delicious local wine, Malvazia.

Beautiful Port of Vrsar in Trieste

The Port of Vrsar in Trieste

Castello Miramar in Trieste

Castello Miramar in Trieste

Lunch of Octopus Salad and Linguini with Lobster Sauce at Forst Restaurant in Vrsar, Istria

Lunch of Octopus Salad and Linguini with Lobster Sauce at Forst Restaurant in Vrsar, Istria

July 25, 2011

Lidia’s recipes featured on PBS’s ZEN


In celebration of the Zen series and her homeland, renowned chef Lidia Bastianich offers three iconic Italian recipes — one inspired by Zen’s hometown of Venice, one from his working world of Rome, and one delectable variation on Zen’s favored white truffle penne.

Click here to read more!

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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read more ›

Lidia's Veggie Trio
Enjoy Lidia's Sauces!
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see all food ›

Lidia's Stoneware Collection

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