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I'm Melissa!

A Food Network chef + mama obsessed with travel, and mouth watering food. I also own a gorgeous cooking school in Italy. My mission? To share the secrets of La Dolce Vita so you can create a healthy, beautiful, delicious life filled with joy!


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Ok… so this is going to be a long one. It’s been a hard couple of months for everyone. We are in the midst of a Corona Virus Pandemic. And I know we are all just trying to stay positive and upbeat. It isn’t easy when you are working from home, on top of your spouse and you homeschooling your kids even when you have no clue how to solve the math problem. Can we just recognize that teachers are way underpaid and angels sent from heaven?

And then there is the added stress of keeping your business running and worrying about money, work and the economy. There are food rations and no toilet paper. Hahahaha. And we have no idea how long it will all take to resolve this or find a vaccine. It is all in Hashem’s hands right now.

But I have to admit. I have kind of been enjoying the quarantine a little bit. I have been off social and I am avoiding the news and any doom and gloom reports. So I am way more present and creative. I am working on a new website and masterclass. I am writing and cleaning and organizing my home. It’s crazy how much joy color-coding things brings me.

I’m launching my new podcast “‘Melissima” so make sure to subscribe on Spotify and iTunes. We’ve also been playing tile rummy and other board games, and Jade always wins. I have been trying to walk every day just for some fresh air. I see families out walking their dogs and riding bikes with their kids. There is no traffic and no rushing.

I have been cooking healthy light meals loaded with oil, fruits, and veggies. But we aren’t wasting anything and we keep portion sizes small. I have been drinking a ton of water. We have watched some really good shows and I have been reading. I will include a list of my favorite books and shows below.


  1. You are a Badass – Jen Sincero
  2. The Audacity to Be Queen – Gina De Vee
  3. The Happiness Project – Gretchen Rubin
  4. What I Know for Sure – Oprah Winfrey
  5. Girl Wash Your Face – Rachel Hollis
  6. The Alchemist – Paulo Coelho
  7. The Rise – Danette May
  8. You’ll See it When You Believe It – Wayne Dyer
  9. Have a Little Faith – Mitch Albom
  10. Ladies Night – Mary Kay Andrews
  11. The Nightingale – Kristin Hannah
  12. Bossy Pants – Tina Fey
  13. Trevor Noah – Born a Crime
  14. Bread, Body, Spirit – Alice Peck
  15. One by One – Stories of the Rebbe


  1. The Morning Show
  2. Curb Your Enthusiasm
  3. Flea Bag
  4. Luther
  5. Supernatural
  6. The Wire
  7. The Witcher
  8. Friends
  9. Goliath
  10. Intelligence
  11. Sunny In Philadelphia
  12. Hunter’s
  13. Ozark
  14. Two Broke Girls
  15. Revenge
  16. The Girlfriend’s Guide to Divorce
  17. Arrested Development
  18. Brooklyn 99

Questions, comments, brilliant suggestions for coping with lockdown? Awesome books or shows I missed. Let me know in the comments below so I can check them out. I love hearing from you. 


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I'm Melissa, your host & tour guide.

A Food Network chef, author, mamma, eternal optimist, wannabe-mermaid, spice mixologist, and “dough therapist” (yep, it’s a thing)—

I'm also the founder of Susina Cucina, the gorgeous, Italian cooking school I manifested into my reality. I’m obsessed with Aperol spritzes, travel, and mouthwatering food… especially pizza and pasta.

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Food Netwok Chef, Melissa is dishing up delicious food and a once-in-a-lifetime experience for your soul.

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The Magic of Italy
without the planning


Food Netwok Chef, Melissa is dishing up delicious food and a once-in-a-lifetime experience for your soul.

find out more →

Hands down the prettiest, do-it-yourself, easy-to-use, customizable, website templates on the internet. They look super expensive, but I promise they won't break the bank. 

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Healthy living is beautiful … That’s why it’s calledLa Dolce Vita”.


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