Living and traveling throughout Italy for many years has changed my life forever. Seeing places I’d always dreamed of seeing, making friends all over the world met in Italy and discovering the unequaled gifts the country has to offer has changed so much in my life. Let me introduce you to my new project “EXPRESSLY ITALIAN”

I am a better traveler, and a much improved cook. I have learned how to locate the best available within an area and I am better at communicating (except in Italian – that’s still a struggle). Italy is my passion. It’s time for me to share some of what I’ve discovered there. I can hardly wait to share my love of discovery, history, art, food and all things Italian.


Italy is, in the most basic sense, all about food. Any conversation you overhear in italian can be guaranteed to be about food. What they just had to eat, where they will eat next, how what they last ate was cooked, how it should be cooked, how their Mamma or Nonna made it better and where they found the ingredients. Food is a nationwide passion.

As Mario Batali says, “There are Italians and everyone else – who wants to be Italian”. Everyone knows the beauty of the country, the importance of Italian art, the history of the Roman empire and the popularity of Italian food. Can you even imagine a world without Pizza? Or pasta? I can’t.

Most cooks know there are differences in the regional cooking throughout Italy. There are some dishes that have a version in many regions. And, there are many types of dishes unique to their own region, and some of those are not only unknown outside the region, but some are known within the town of origin. Italian food is about using the best ingredients, the freshest, available locally grown things. In other words, the best of what is available nearest your table.

There really is no such thing as “Italian cuisine”. Italy is made up of many distinct cuisines, each with its own flavor palette and preferred cooking techniques. These techniques and cuisines can be roughly grouped within regional boundaries. I’ve had a wonderful time exploring local delicacies. And finding ways to use them here in the U.S.

Trajan Market

There are hundreds of great blogs about Italian regional cooking, about Italy’s food and about traveling the country. I could not do better than most of them. What I have to share is about the less traveled, lesser known products of Italy. The Italy most tourists and even some locals haven’t found. The treasures I’ve uncovered in my explorations – the uncommon, the unique, and the “Expressly Italian”.


    Judith Visty said:
    November 9, 2019 at 2:57 pm

    Enjoyed reading your blog for the first time this morning. I am just back from a trip to Umbria (Gubbio) and Paestum with stops in a few other places including Spices of the World in Rome. I gather the company has been sold. Do you know anything about that?

    Thanks for the informative articles and i have book marked your site for future browsing. I’m not a great client prospect because I like to go to Italy and shop for myself. But I admire the energy it takes to do it for others.

    Buona fortuna!

      expresslyitalian responded:
      November 9, 2019 at 3:17 pm


      Thanks for writing.  I love Gubbio and practically everywhere else in Umbria.  Spello most I think.

      Mauro Berardo is 3rd generation in the market at Campo dei Fiori and his son Marco is the 4th generation.   Mauro is not going anywhere.  I saw him only the day before yesterday.   Marco has opened a booth next to him selling cheeses and salumi.   Mauro will not ship outside Italy, which is why he is so happy to have me around.  And, his spice mixes are truly famous all over the world judging by how many requests and comments I get for people looking to replenish their spices.

      Client or not, happy to know you are there.


    Guy said:
    December 15, 2020 at 8:49 pm

    Hi Kathleen,
    I have seen that you wrote a bit about the Berardi family spice stand at Campo Dei Fiori.
    I came across their stand by “accident”, purchased myself some Bolognese mix, that has been improving my Bolognese sauce ever since. As someone who really enjoys cooking, I consider this to be pure gold!
    I was wondering if you know of any way they could\would be willing to send packages or their magical spice also to Germany? Especially during such times when I cannot travel as often as I would want to, this would be amazing!

      expresslyitalian responded:
      December 16, 2020 at 12:26 am

      How nice of you to contact me. I hope you tried several of Mauro’s spice mixes. His Mauro’s Mix and the Campo dei Fiori are both so versatile it is quite difficult to do without them. Unfortunately, that is where I, too, am currently. I have not been able to travel to Italy since November of last year. I actually act as a sort of personal shopper and advocate for small suppliers I work directly with. Like Mauro, exporting is beyond them.
      Mauro is not willing to deal with the costs and time constraints and paperwork of sending anything out of Italy. While a
      I do have a couple clients who have me ship to Great Britain, I imagine it would be cost prohibitive for me to ship from Los Angeles to Germany, but I am happy to check on it when I can finally travel again. I have fingers crossed that will be by early May. In the interim I will add you to my mailing list to keep you up-to-date on the status. Thanks for your interest.

      expresslyitalian responded:
      December 16, 2020 at 12:31 am

      For some reason I can’t access your email address. Can you send it to me at expresslyitalian@aol.com. Add your mailing address so I know what part of Germany you live. Thanks and Happy Holidays. Stay safe!

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