Peter Reinhart has done it again giving us yet another indispensible resource for making excellent breads at home. In this book Reinhart takes the basic principles behind no-knead bread and applies them to his own formulas and techniques. The result is a sort of hybrid that, while a bit more involved than other no-knead recipes, still cuts down on active time, and results in some of the best breads you will ever make.
In the cookbook Seafood alla Siciliana: Recipes and Stories from a Living Tradition, author Toni Lydecker takes us with her on a trek through Sicily in which she visits fishermen, fish mongers, restaurant chefs and home cooks all over the Island. The result is a comprehensive and evocative volume on the rich culinary tradition of Sicilian Seafood that not only gives us great recipes, but an insight on how history and tradition have shaped the wonderfully eclectic cooking of the island.
The first book in the new Italy’s Food Culture series of cookbooks, translated from the original Italian, by Oronzo Editions, Puglia: A Culinary Memoir, covers a regional cuisine that I would venture not too many Americans are familiar with. Personally, I did not know much about the cooking of the Puglia. Being a bread baker, I was familiar with the two famous breads from the region, Pane Pugliese and Pane di Altamura, but that was extent of my knowledge, before reading this volume. The author, Maria Pignatelli Ferrante, does a comprehensive job of chronicalling what the preface refers to as “the miracle of the cooking of Puglia.”
Italy’s Food Culture is a series of regional Italian cookbooks, translated into English, from publisher Oronzo Editions. Two volumes have been released so far, Puglia: A Culinary Memoir and Sicily: Culinary Crossroads. The noble goal of this series is to give the American reader an unfiltered look into the rich regional culinary history and recipes of Italy, and it is off to a great start.
A16 is an acclaimed restaurant in San Francisco, inspired by the food from the Campania region in southern Italy. It is named after the highway that runs through Campania connecting Naples to Puglia. A16: Food and Wine, a cookbook by A16’s executive chef and Wine Director, Nate Applemen and Shelly Lindgren respectively, is an excellent guide to the wines and peasant food of Campania and nearby regions.
I must start this review off with an apology. There is no excuse for waiting until mid-August to post a review of The Perfect Scoop. If this is the first you are hearing of this excellent book on all things ice cream, then I have let over two months of prime ice cream making and eating time this summer slip through your grip. That’s the bad news. The good news is if you are a true ice cream lover like me, you enjoy it all year around and this book will become an indespensible member of your cookbook library.
Here is a cookbook that truly understands how Italians eat. “Italian meals are structured in a way that keeps family and friends at the table,” the introduction tells us. The focus on family and friends eating together is a central theme throughout this book. In addition to being family-centric, the Italian way of eating is closely tied to the seasons. Italians eat based on what is locally available at that time of year; therefore a hearty winter meal will be quite different than a light summer lunch.
Over 50 years ago Domus, an Italian architectural magazine, commissioned a team of cooking experts to travel across Italy. Their mission was to gather traditional recipes from different regions of Italy for a cookbook. The result of this undertaking was The Silver Spoon (Il Cucchiaio d’Argento in Italian). Long considered a classic in Italy, this cookbook has never been available in English, until now.
Tucked away on a small side street, a few minutes walk from the Rialto Bridge in Venice is Osteria da Fiore, considered by many to be the best Restaurant in Venice. I had the good fortune to dine there on my recent trip to Italy and it was definitely one my most memorable dining experiences.
In her latest cookbook Marcella Hazan attempts to capture the spirit of her famous Italian cooking classes, which began modestly in her New York City apartment during the 1960s and evolved into widely sought out Master Classes in her Venice home.
When it comes to pizza just about everybody in America has strong feelings about who makes the best (well at least everybody in New York, where I grew up). Some people tend to get very passionate about this issue.
The New York town I grew up in, Mount Vernon, had a several good Italian bakeries, plus it was 15 minutes from Arthur Avenue, the Bronx’s Little Italy. Therefore, I became accustomed to being able to pick up a fresh loaf of delicious Italian bread in minutes.