No one does beautiful cookbooks like Tessa Kiros, and her track record speaks for itself. In Recipes for an Italian Life, much-loved author Tessa Kiros celebrates the heritage of the country she has chosen to call home. This whimsically feminine book is a tribute to the women in our lives–mothers, mothers-in-law, grandmothers–and the important lessons we learn from them. With accessible, delicious recipes ranging from robust family dishes to quirky cakes and old-fashioned sauces and preserves, this book is a precious heirloom for today. The chapters are based on rooms and items in the home, such as the bread oven; vegetable patch; snack box; pasta pot; meat, fish, and chicken in the dining room; and the ice box. Some of the recipes include: Basil Liqueur, Sweet Pizza, Artichoke and Herb Soup, Potato and Truffle Purses, Roast Rabbit with Grapes, Chickpeas with Prawns, Marmalade Cake, and Cappuccino Ice Cream.
Hundreds of cookbooks are published each year but only a handful of them truly transport the reader into another time and place. Here Kiros (Falling Cloudberries) does just that, whisking readers off to Italy, where they're welcomed into the kitchens of a number of Italian matriarchs to discuss life, love, and cooking. Tips on caring for linens, keeping weeds away from potted plants, and preventing hiccups are interspersed with reliable, mouth-watering recipes for Spaghetti with Lentil Ragu; Sicilian Pasta Al Forno; Risotto with Shrimp, Lavender and Lemon; Perch with Lemon, Capers, Green Olive Mashed Potatoes; and Raspberry Caramel Patries with Cr me Fraiche. Kiros's matriarchs also provide guidance on staples like homemade spinach tagliatelle, orange marmalade, and limoncello, turning what could have been a rote recitation into a keepsake that is likely to become dog-eared sooner than readers would prefer. Those looking for reliable, time-tested recipes for the classics will find this to be a treasure trove. Kiros has created the literary equivalent of an exuberant Italian mother-in-law, and though it's sure to find a welcome place on many a bookshelf, it won't likely remain shelved for long. Color photos.