The Small But Essential Pleasures of Italy (October/November 2021)

This article originally appeared in the October/November 2021 issue of Dream of Italy.  For me, dreaming of Italy—which is all I have done since my last visit there in October 2019—might not be what you would expect. Yes, there is the sublime cuisine and superb wine, but I write Italian cookbooks and can make dishes at home that remind me of la …

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Seven Ways to Photograph Italy Like A Pro (October/November 2020)

This article originally appeared in the October/November 2020 issue of Dream of Italy. Anyone who has been to Italy knows how visually seductive it is. If you’re carrying a camera (and with every mobile phone equipped with a high-quality camera, who isn’t?) Italy becomes even more alluring, compelling you to make photographs of nearly everything you see. But why is it …

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Share Your Dream: The Layers of Sicily and Eggplant Parmigiana (August/September 2020)

This article originally appeared in the August/September 2020 issue of Dream of Italy. When I dream of Italy, I dream of Sicily and all the many ways they eat eggplant. That beautiful, shiny, dark purple vegetable is everywhere. You eat it hot and cold…in pasta and in salads…in caponata and, of course, in eggplant parmesan (parmigiana di melanzane). They say in Sicily that parmesan has nothing …

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Share Your Dream: A Friendship That Has Endured (June/July 2020)

This article originally appeared in the June/July 2020 issue of Dream of Italy. When I dream of Italy, I dream of the places I’ve been with my Italian friend, Liliana who lives in Milan, and the places in Italy we have yet to see together. Liliana and I were matched up, by happenstance, as pen pals in 1977. I was taking …

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There’s Always Italy: A Chat with Frances Mayes (March 2020)

This article originally appeared in the March 2020 issue of Dream of Italy. One of my favorite things to say is, “no matter what, we always have Italy.” I know my friend Frances Mayes feels the same way, even during these impossibly difficult times as we go to press. Frances is a most calming presence both in person and in her prose. Hopefully …

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Perfect Places to Stay in Palermo

This article originally appeared in the March 2019 issue of Dream of Italy. Only a few years ago, the options for accommodations in Palermo were limited, but now there are new hotels, B&Bs and hostels opening every day. The city can be noisy and a bit intimidating on a first visit, so it’s a fine idea to spend a little …

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Enjoying Old and New Palermo

This article originally appeared in the March 2019 issue of Dream of Italy. Palermo, the capital of Sicily, is one of the oldest and most complex cities in Italy. Sitting on the northwest coast of Italy’s largest island, it has a history dating back to the 8th century BC. Unfortunately, for many it has become infamous in the past century …

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Five Foods to Eat in Palermo

This article originally appeared in the March 2019 issue of Dream of Italy. Food is more than just a way to survive in Sicily, it’s more like a religion. Almost every conversation, no matter if it is politics or religion, eventually turns to the subject of food. Sicilians can debate at great length which recipe makes the best pasta sauce …

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Sweet 16 Places to Eat

This article originally appeared in the December 2018/January 2019 issue of Dream of Italy. See the full Dream of Italy’s: 16th Anniversary Favorites article here. Santo Palato (Rome) Our new favorite Roman restaurant in the San Giovanni neighborhood has a bright young chef, Sarah Cicolini, whose rigatoni alla pajata, rigatoni with calves’ intestines in a tomato sauce, is sensational. Depending on what is available fresh on any …

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Sweet 16 Places to Stay

This article originally appeared in the December 2018/January 2019 issue of Dream of Italy. See the full Dream of Italy’s: 16th Anniversary Favorites article here. Albergo Diffuso Santo Stefano di Sessanio (Abruzzo) There are few places more beautiful in Italy than Abruzzo’s Gran Sasso National Park. Albergo Diffuso Santo Stefano di Sessanio is located almost entirely within the park and was one of the first of these …

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