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Ciao Italia

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Mary Ann visits vintner Vahe Keushguerian, owner of Le Corte winery in Italy where she learns what it takes to make world-class wines. Then she joins Vahe in his kitchen where he cooks Penne with Wine. Then Mary Ann continues her all-wine program, nella cucina, as she prepares a quick dish, Chicken with Olives. And what's for dessert? You guessed it; Red Wine Cake. Salute e buon appetito.

Award-winning Executive Chef Daniel Bruce takes a day off from his Rowe Wharf Sea Grille restaurant in Boston, to cook vegetarian with Mary Ann nella cucina, where they prepare Daniel's daughter's favorite; Ricotta and Parmesan Cheese Eggplant Rollatini and then Mary Ann's complements is with her classic Italian favorite, Neapolitan Style Stuffed Red Peppers.

Mary Ann travels to the heart of Tuscany to cook with Maria Gorelli at Banfi winery, near Montalcino, Italy. They begin by creating classic Tuscan Pici, a hand rolled, thick-spaghetti style pasta that's the perfect base for Poor Sauce, made from toasted breadcrumbs, olive oil, tomatoes and garlic. And to go with it, a hearty Venison Stew guaranteed to chase the winter blues away.

Mary Ann travels to La Sosta del Rosselino, a small restaurant near Florence, Italy to discover the secret of chef/owner Damiano's signature Potato gnocchi; simple to make, soft as clouds, drifting in a butter sauce and utterly unforgettable. Inspired, Mary Ann goes nella cucina to create - just as heavenly - Gnocchi di Spinaci e Ricotta (Spinach and Ricotta Cheese Gnocchi) with a hint of mint and nutmeg.

Mary Ann proves that a great sauce can turn everyday eating into a Sunday treat when she prepares a hearty Oven Baked Beef Shin Tomato Ragu over short cut pasta, followed by a delicate Ricotta Cheese Sauce, and then finishes up with a citrusy Sicilian Lemon and Olive Oil Sauce that makes ordinary fish taste fantastic.

Mary Ann features Canederli with Speck, a fantastic dumpling-like recipe from the little-known Italian region of Trentino Aldo Adige. Filled with diced speck, this unique meat product adds an unmistakeable, smoke-like flavor to the tender canederli, bobbing in broth. Perfect for a cold winter's night.

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