From the Emmy-winning host of Lidia’s Kitchen, best-selling author, and beloved ambassador for Italian culinary traditions in America comes the ultimate master class: a beautifully produced definitive guide to Italian cooking, coauthored with her daughter, Tanya—covering everything from ingredients to techniques to tools, plus more than 400 delectable recipes.
Teaching has always been Lidia’s passion, and in this magnificent book she gives us the full benefit of that passion and of her deep, comprehensive understanding of what it takes to create delicious Italian meals. With this book, readers will learn all the techniques needed to master Italian cooking. Lidia introduces us to the full range of standard ingredients—meats and fish, vegetables and fruits, grains, spices and condiments—and how to buy, store, clean, and cook with them. The 400 recipes run the full gamut from classics like risotto alla milanese and Tagliatelle with Mushroom Sauce to Lidia’s always-satisfying originals like Bread and Prune Gnocchi and Beet Ravioli in Poppy Seed Sauce. She gives us a comprehensive guide to the tools every kitchen should have to produce the best results. And she has even included a glossary of cuisine-related words and phrases that will prove indispensable for cooking, as well as for traveling and dining in Italy. There is no other book like this; it is the one book on Italian cuisine that every cook will need.
Bastianich and her daughter give a magnificent master class in Italian cooking in their latest culinary collaboration, following 2013's Lidia's Commonsense Italian Cooking. Their book begins with an excellent primer on Italian ingredients and cooking techniques that leaves no stone unturned. Tips are sprinkled throughout, providing both good techniques ("The more you chop garlic, the more intense the flavor and aroma") and good sense ("Some people are surprised to learn you can make risotto with plain water. Of course you can."). With over 400 recipes, the collection highlights old favorites that have a firm following in the states rag alla bolognese, eggplant parmigiana, and chicken cacciatore alongside vegetable-centric dishes that are truer to day-to-day Italian cooking: farro salad with grilled eggplant and peppers, and rigatoni with cauliflower, saffron, and golden raisins. Bastianich hails from the Istrian peninsula, and the "Fish and Seafood" chapter includes toothsome recipes such as Istrian whole fish stew. She's also not afraid to riff on the classics with recipes such as fresh pear and pecorino ravioli with cacio e pepe. The book completes its course with a charming chapter on Italian culture and language, as well as an extensive glossary of food terms. With this passionate treatise on Italian food and culture, readers dreaming of la dolce vita may find armchair travels enough to satisfy their hunger.