Chef Santo Bruno

Brooklyn bagels

You may wonder why I decided to write about bagels this month. Well, here in New York, pizza shops are rapidly tapping into the breakfast market. Street vendors are starting to sell pizza at night, so why shouldn’t you offer breakfast? In these changing times, pizza sales sometimes need a boost. Especially for … More

Chef Santo Bruno

Ricotta spinach cannelloni

Cannelloni incorporates oversized rigatoni pasta that Sicilians enjoy because you can stuff them with many different ingredients. One of my favorite cannelloni recipes is one using eggplant, ricotta cheese and ground veal. The one here is stuffed with spinach and ricotta, and you can use your imagination to come up with additional … More

Business & Marketing

Winning menus

What if your top-line revenue remained flat and your bottom-line profit grew by 3% to 5%? How do successful independents and chains grow so rapidly? The answer: through menu engineering.  Menu engineering is a sophisticated study that observes how restaurant patrons make item selections, and then designs or engineers the menu to encourage consumers to select certain items over … More

Chef Santo Bruno


One of the most popular salads in Sicilian cuisine is caponata (eggplant salad). While eggplant is the main ingredient, the salad likely takes its name from one of the secondary ingredients—capers. You’ll find eggplant in many Sicilian dishes, and it’s used in many ways, including in both sweet and savory meals. I like to make caponata … More

Food & Ingredients

Breaking bread

A decade ago, if you thought of the word “artisan,” images of craftspeople and their trades—glassblowing, ceramics or woodwork, perhaps—might come to mind. But the term “artisanal” now, more than ever, applies to the culinary arts, including bread making. The artisanal trend has been growing for years, with an explosion of self-proclaimed foodies demanding everything from … More

Chef Santo Bruno

Stuffed pizza

I was on the phone with a client from Chicago one day discussing pizza, and he asked if I ever make Chicago-style pizza. I told him yes, and I thought I’d share the recipe with you. Once I planned out the ingredients, I went shopping and put it all together—and those who … More

Chef Santo Bruno

Spaghettini zucchini

In light of the immense heat we’ve been experiencing throughout the country, I figured everyone might be craving a light, refreshing meal to wind down the summer. I was in my pool the other day, getting hungry and pondering a summertime dish that was easy to prepare and light in calories. My … More

Chef Santo Bruno

Spaghetti with mussels

Mussels are one of my many favorites—and I don’t mean body muscles! When many think of mussels, they think only of appetizers, but this shellfish has many uses: in red sauce, white sauce, seafood pizzas, etc. Mussels are very popular in all of the coastal regions of Italy and are delicious served with pasta. This simple dish … More

Chef Santo Bruno

Paglia e Fieno

As all of my readers know, I’m into pasta. I love pasta. I can eat it every day. And I’m not just talking about spaghetti with meatballs—we’re talking about real food, especially when it comes to cream sauce. This dish, which uses cream sauce, is very simple to make, but you must take … More

Chef Santo Bruno

Zucchini parmesan

This month I’m sharing a really simple and healthy dish for the summer, designed especially for vegetarians. I’d also like to introduce you to the future of the pizza industry. His name is Robert Aguanno, and he’s the grandson of Joe Ferrara at Marsal & Sons. At only nine years old, he already spends a … More

Chef Santo Bruno

Risotto alla Susie

Most of the Italian recipes I see today are for pizza and pasta, but I’ve done some research and found that rice is actually a bigger seller—which makes sense, because rice is eaten around the world. It could even be more popular than pizza or pasta. So, while pizza is still No. 1 … More

Chef Santo Bruno

Eggplant penne bake

Those who’ve spent time in Sicily may recall that eggplant is a popular ingredient in many dishes. My brother, a chef who lives in Palermo, loves to make this eggplant penne bake for the events he caters. The first time I tried it was at a wedding I attended in Palermo; it was made … More