Benvenuto a Foods & Brews! It seems more than appropriate that my first post on F&B be about making ricotta for the first time, a Saturday trip to various shops in Brooklyn, and meeting an Italian cookbook goddess.

You see, this Saturday was the first over 50 degrees day we’ve had in NYC since November, and naturally, the streets and parks were filled with folks getting their first glimpse of spring. Instead of taking my day to the park, I had already planned on paying a visit to the store-uprooted-from-Italy-and-planted-in-Brooklyn, D. Coluccio & Sons.

D. Collucio & Sons

This specialty store is in Dyker Heights, but it is exactly like a little store on the cobble-stoned streets of a small Italian town. From prosciutto di parma and their own olive oil, to fig preserve and my favorite biscotti, Pan di Stelle, this place has it all. This Saturday, it also had famed Italian cookbook author Michele Scicolone. Michele’s most recent book is The Italian Slow Cooker, which I am now in possession of and more than excited about. With recipes for seafood stew, pasta fagioli, creamy polenta with gorgonzola and mascarpone, a dozen ragus, and desserts like chocolate truffle cake, I’m pulling the slow cooker out of the closet, and will be reporting on the recipes here. (more…)