Palazzo Caetani and the Isola Mattei, a virtual tour

Grand Salotto Palazzo Caetani

The Palazzo Caetani was one of the great sixteenth century palazzi in Rome. Originally one of a group of palazzi belonging to the powerful Mattei family, it occupied an entire city block on the edge of Largo Argentina. This block is known as the Isola Mattei, or Mattei Island. The Mattei began as rich merchants and over time evolved into…

Homemade pasta: easy and fun to make!

Making homemde pasta

No dish is more quintessentially Italian than homemade pasta. It can be long, short, filled or cut small to use in soup. There are also pastas that use a variety of whole grain flours, water instead of eggs, or hot water and butter instead of eggs. Despite innumerable variations, this classic homemade pasta recipe is perfect as the…

Rome’s Fascinating Quartière Coppedé!

Fairy Cottages Piazza Mincio Coppedé neighborhood

The Quartière Coppedé, one of Rome’s most fascinating neighborhoods, is just a short bus ride from the heart of Rome’s city center, or less than a half hour’s walk following along the Villa Borghese park towards Parioli. This often overlooked, but extremely beautiful and captivating quartière is named after the neighborhood’s designer and architect, florentine…

Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad with Grated Parmesan Cheese and Toasted Walnuts

Brussels Sprouts & Toasted Walnut Salad

Shaved Brussels Sprouts Salad with Grated Parmesan Cheese & Toasted Walnuts is a delightful winter salad and a great way to serve this winter vegetable! I’d never thought of using brussels sprouts raw in a salad but it’s one of the easiest and tastiest ways to use them. Brussels sprouts are an odd vegetable. Their…

Penne all’Amatriciana

Amatriciana or matriciana, the sauce is still the same: rich, spicy, with crunchy bits of guanciale. The name varies based on who’s trying to lay claim to this pasta sauce’s origins. The sauce is supposedly named after the town of Amatrice in the Appenine hills to the North East of Rome just at the absolute…

Chocolate Truffle Treats

Chocolate Truffle treats

  My sister Laurie made these Chocolate Truffle Treats for a recent cookie exchange party and as she described them to me I knew they were a winner! Then when I saw a picture of them I was completely sold. The flavor is so rich and delightful, and incredibly chocolatey,  you think you’re eating truffles….

New Year’s lunch at Garibaldi Restaurant

Garibaldi is my favorite restaurant in Rome and for a whole host of reasons. It’s close by and I can’t deny that adds a lot to its appeal. But that’s just the whipped cream on top of the icing already on top of the cake. I like a restaurant that makes you happy just by being there:…

Christmas Decorations & Festivity in Rome

Piazza Venezia Christmas tree

There are some lovely decorations, lights and Christmas trees to check out as you stroll through Rome during the holiday season. Christmas in Italy is also characterised by its lovely and elaborate nativity scenes (presepi) which you’ll find in just about every church in the city, and by the gorgeous panettone packages in the window of every alimentare…