Homemade Yogurt All Summer Long

Homade Yogurt from Cheryl Sternman Rule's Yogurt Culture Book

Returning from Sicily to Philadelphia’s simmering pot of hot weather has thrown me into a jag of yogurt making. Thanks to Cheryl Sternman Rule’s recent book, Yogurt Culture, I’ve made batch after perfect batch — a feat, since I have tried yogurt recipes in the past with mixed results. Cheryl’s instructions are exacting. And her recipe (below) works […]

Sicily: A Cheese Lover’s Itinerary

Cheese at the Market in Catania

By now, you know that I am smitten with cheese travel. Of all the places I’ve visited, Sicily ranks #1 in my mind for having the most cheese-enthused citizens. (Sorry, Vermont.) The Sicilians I met during my two week cheese trek in June didn’t just love waxing poetic about their neighbor’s ricotta, they wanted to […]

When In Ragusa, Eat Ragusano

Ragusano cheese in Ragusa

If Sicily has a cheese capital, it must be Ragusa, a baroque town on the southeastern part of the island. Here, my cheese lover, you may experience a thousand diversions, from visiting the beautiful Dipasquale’s Casa del Formaggio (cheese shop) in the heart of town to booking a cheese tasting at CoRFiLaC, a research center devoted to […]

Tasting the Cheeses of Sicily

Photo by David Kessler

For the cheese-curious traveler in Sicily (or Italy, for that matter), there are several useful books to read in advance: Slow Food’s Italian Cheese and Italy Dish by Dish. Before I left the States, I scoured them both and spent an evening at my kitchen table making a list in my journal of all the divine […]

The Baked Ricotta of Mirto

Ricotta Infornata from La Paisanella in Sicily

Before my Sicilian cheese trek began, I saw images of  “Ricotta Infornata” — sheep’s milk ricotta pressed into forms and baked to a dark chocolate-brown color. Naturally, I was curious to find a source. My co-conspirators, Marriane and Cindi, helped me suss out the small town of Mirto in the Nebrodie Mountains which is home […]