Defining Organic

The Organic Trade Association provides background and information about organic food on its web site, www.ota.com. The OTA defines organic as food that is produced in soil that is free of toxic and persistent pesticides and fertilizers. The food itself must be raised without the use of antibiotics, synthetic hormones, genetic engineering, sewer sludge orMore »

Potato Tart

Some clarification on Pecorino Romano and Romano is in order. A true pecorino Romano is made from Sheep’s milk (pecorino translates as “little sheep”) and comes from an area around Rome (though pecorino is made in many regions of Italy). Romano made in this country is made with cow’s milk. Pecorino Romano, which is indispensableMore »

Oven Dried Tomatoes

For added authenticity, consider trying tomatoes on your own (provided you have the manpower). It’s easier than you might think. Here’s a quick recipe: Oven-Dried Tomatoes 2 pounds Roma tomatoes 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus additional as needed 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme leaves 5 garlic cloves, crushed 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 1/4 teaspoonMore »

Ricotta and Ricotta Salata

This month, The Cheese Whiz is addressing two important cheeses –– ricotta and ricotta salata. Though similar in name, these two cheeses are like night and day. Let me explain. In this country, ricotta is made from whole or partially skimmed cow’s milk. Italian ricotta is made from sheep’s-milk whey. Similarly, ricotta salata (ree-COH-tah sah-LAH-tah)More »

Chocolate Cake

More restaurants need to step up to the plate (so to speak) when it comes to desserts. Why? Because you lose income (lower check average) if you don’t. Why? Because you increase customer satisfaction. Absolutely, there are a gazillion desserts –– many of them quite good –– that you can purchase from suppliers that are readyMore »