Three years ago, my then boyfriend – and now husband, brought to me to meet his family in Rome, for the first time. When I say family, I mean his parents, brother and all the other twenty close and extended relatives and friends that show up for Sunday lunches. Yes, somehow, under the right conditions, a Roman man ended up in central Wisconsin as an ex-pat, we met, I charmed him with my femininity, ha.. and that, well, led to marriage.
Since, then we have been to Rome many times, our daughters understand and are able to speak more Italian than I do.
On our Christmas visits, my brother-in-law, Andrea, and I are the pasta makers for Christmas day lunch(Christmas Eve is all about fish). Cappelletti, is the traditional pasta for Christmas Day; it’s name is because of its resemblance to “little hats;” Bishops hats, I suppose. They are stuffed with a combination of roasted meats; proscuitto and parmigiano and then served in a broth. The stuffing is my mother-in-law’s job. So, it really takes three to make cappelletti in our house.
This year we made enough pasta to feed fifty. Here is the slab of pasta, pre-manufacturing.
And here is the 2012 cappalletti finished product. We’ve gotten better at it and they are a bit more correct; the hats should be tipped on the top.. it’s much harder than it looks and perhaps this year they’ll be closer to perfect.
The Silver Spoon was the first bible of Italian cooking, and only recently translated into English for the first time in the last ten years! If you are looking for truly authentic recipes, I can only direct you to the proper source. Recently they have branched out and made more specific cookbooks, looking specifically at Tuscany, Sicily and they even have a cookbook for kids.
Even better, go to Italy! Go there! Eat! Learn what it is supposed to taste like and then duplicate it at home! And if you’re reading this because of photography, which is most likely, then go there! And make photos!