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Lidia Cooks from the Heart of Italy: A Feast of 175 Regional Recipesby Lidia Matticchio Bastianich
Synopses & Reviews
In this inspiring new book, Lidia Bastianich awakens in us a new respect for food and for the people who produce it in the little-known parts of Italy that she explores. All of the recipes reflect the regions from which they spring, and in translating them to our home kitchens, Lidia passes on time-honored techniques and wonderful, uncomplicated recipes for dishes bursting with different regional flavors—the kind of elemental, good family cooking that is particularly appreciated today.
Penetrating the heart of Italy—starting at the north, working down to the tip, and ending in Sardinia—Lidia unearths a wealth of recipes:
From Trentino-Alto Adige: Delicious Dumplings with Speck (cured pork); apples accenting soup, pasta, salsa, and salad; local beer used to roast a chicken and to braise beef
From Lombardy: A world of rice—baked in a frittata, with lentils, with butternut squash, with gorgonzola, and the special treat of Risotto Milan-Style with Marrow and Saffron
From Valle dAosta: Polenta with Black Beans and Kale, and local fontina featured in fondue, in a roasted pepper salad, and embedded in veal chops
From Liguria: An array of Stuffed Vegetables, a bread salad, and elegant Veal Stuffed with a Mosaic of Vegetables
From Emilia-Romagna: An olive oil dough for making the traditional, versatile vegetable tart erbazzone, as well as the secrets of making tagliatelle and other pasta doughs, and an irresistible Veal Scaloppine Bolognese
From Le Marche: Farro with Roasted Pepper Sauce, Lamb Chunks with Olives, and Stuffed Quail in Parchment
From Umbria: A taste of the sweet Norcino black truffle, and seductive dishes such as Potato-Mushroom Cake with Braised Lentils, Sausages in the Skillet with Grapes, and Chocolate Bread Parfait
From Abruzzo: Fresh scrippelle (crêpe) ribbons baked with spinach or garnishing a soup, fresh pasta made with a “guitar,” Rabbit with Onions, and Lamb Chops with Olives
From Molise: Fried Ricotta; homemade cavatelli pasta in a variety of ways; Spaghetti with Calamari, Shrimp, and Scallops; and Braised Octopus
From Basilicata: Wedding Soup, Fiery Maccheroni, and Farro with Pork Ragù
From Calabria: Shepherds Rigatoni, steamed swordfish, and Almond Biscottini
From Sardinia: Flatbread Lasagna, two lovely eggplant dishes, and Roast Lobster with Bread Crumb Topping
This is just a sampling of the many delights Lidia has uncovered. All the recipes she shares with us in this rich feast of a book represent the work of the local people and friends with whom she made intimate contact—the farmers, shepherds, foragers, and artisans who produce local cheeses, meats, olive oils, and wines. And in addition, her daughter, Tanya, takes us on side trips in each of the twelve regions to share her love of the country and its art.
"Bastianich, acclaimed restaurateur, star of a PBS cooking show and author (Lidia's Italy, etc.), and her daughter Manuali offer a stellar array of regional Italian recipes in this tantalizing and lavishly photographed collection. They serve up authentic, hearty fare including such favorites as wedding soup from Basilicata, braised veal shanks from Lombardy and spaghetti with clam sauce from Le Marche. They celebrate and honor the cuisine of lesser-known parts of the country including Emilia-Romagna's sweet and sour little onions, Molise's braised octopus with spaghetti, Calabria's spicy calamari and Liguria's stuffed vegetables. In her trademark style, Bastianich places each recipe in the context of its Italian heritage, sharing insight into the people and highlights of the region. Offerings run the gamut from fish and beef to pasta and vegetables and provide insight into the traditional Italian kitchen and lifestyle. Readers will enjoy this volume not only as a cookbook but as a vicarious travel guide, flipping the pages to take in the culture as well as the cuisine. Bastianich's fans will delight in this superb volume, which no kitchen should be without. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
In this warmly written, lushly illustrated new cookbook, Lidia delves into the regional cooking of many lesser known parts of ItalyMolise, Liguria, Umbria, Abruzzo, Calabria, Valle dAosta, Le Marche, Trentino Alto Adige, Basilicata, and Sardiniaand explores hidden treasures in the well-known gastronomic domains of Lombardy and Emilia Romagna.
From the north, she brings us a wealth of rice recipes, including Risotto Milan-Style with Marrow and Saffron; from sheep country, a Braised Leg of Lamb plus Lamb Chops with Olives; from farmlands, Rabbit with Onions and Stuffed Quail in Parchment; from coastal waters, a Roast Lobster with Bread Crumb Topping, and Zuppa di Pesce. And in every region she discovers new ways with pasta.
Above all, no matter where she is, Lidia reaches the local people who make great olive oils, or harvest tiny lentils, or produce artisan cheeses and regional wines. The authentic and delectable recipes she brings home to us are born out of these intimate connections and, as always, out of her passion for the delightfully varied foods of her native Italy. In addition, her daughter, Tanya, takes us on side trips to share her love of the country and its art.
About the Author
Lidia Matticchio Bastianich is the author of five previous books, four of them accompanied by nationally syndicated public television series. She is the owner of the New York City restaurant Felidia (among others), and she lectures on and demonstrates Italian cooking throughout the country. She lives on Long Island, and can be reached at her Web site, www.lidiasitaly.com.
Tanya Bastianich Manuali, Lidias daughter, received her Ph.D. in Italian Renaissance art history from Oxford University. Since 1996 she has led food/wine/art tours of Italy. She lives with her husband and children on Long Island.
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