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Verdura: Vegetables Italian Style [Kindle Edition]

Viana La Place
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Product Description


"The Italians really know how to use their vegetables and this is a
wonderful celebration of that art." -- Jewish Telegraph. November, 2006

Product Description

Named to Cooking Light magazine’s list of the Top 100 Cookbooks of the Last 25 Years

Since its first publication in 1991, Viana La Place's
Verdura has become a much loved classic. And with good reason: Its 300 irresistible recipes represent the best of the Italian approach to vegetable preparation, an earthy yet spirited technique that celebrates fresh ingredients simply treated. Many readers have made the book their vegetable cooking bible; those who have not yet added it to their kitchen libraries will want to do so.

Contending that eating well-prepared vegetables helps us to appreciate life's natural cycles, La Place presents recipes for antipastos, salads, soups, sandwiches, pasta, risottos, pizzas, and much more. The vegetables she explores run from the familiar - artichokes, aubergines, radicchio - to the more exotic, such as chayote, cardoons, and brocciflower. (La Place sautés this cauliflower-broccoli hybrid in garlic and oil, then tops it with pungent provolone.) Other recipes, such as Soup of Dried Fava Beans with Fresh Fennel, Fettucine with Peas, Green Onions, and Mint, Grilled Bread with Mushrooms and Herbs, and Baked Red Pepper Fritatta, give further evidence of La Place's original yet thoughtful way with the earth's bounty.

Desserts are also included, among them Watermelon with Bittersweet Chocolate Shavings, Grilled Figs with Honey and Walnuts, and Lemon Granita and Brioche. With a vegetable and herb guide and an ingredient glossary,
Verdura provides comprehensive information while exciting the palate.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 578 KB
  • Print Length: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Grub Street Cookery (6 Oct. 2013)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #578,589 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Mixed bag 5 Nov. 2010
By Marand TOP 100 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Decent, but not outstanding, book for vegetarians or those wanting some more inspiring ways to use vegetables but in my view it is a bit of a mixed bag. Overall, I felt slightly disappointed.

Some recipes are very simple e.g. a lot of the grilled breads & sandwiches & some of the salads don't really require a recipe at all. For example a recipe is given for rocket salad which involves just rocket, salt(to taste!), olive oil and lemon. Frankly this just seemed to be padding to me - neither original nor needing a recipe. I can't think of anyone who is likely to buy a cookery book of this type who will be so lacking in skill that they need a recipe for something this basic. Another one that I found rather amusing was the Russian salad sandwich which involved using a recipe for the salad given elsewhere in the book and "eight slices of good quality bread" with the following method: "Divide the Russian Salad among 4 slices of bread. Spread the salad to cover the bread slices but not all the way to the edges. Top with the remaining 4 slices of bread. Cut the sandwiches in half diagonally or, if serving with drinks, in bite-sized squares." I came close to hurling the book at the wall at that point. I didn't really feel I benefited from any of the other sandwich recipes either - I think I could have thought of, and prepared, mozzarella & tomato & grilled mozzarella sandwiches without assistance.

The book is divided into chapters as follows:

Store cupboard recipes: e.g. aubergine & almond caponatina; smoked mozarella marinated in herbs and olive oil (lovely, although I have to say finding smoked mozzarella, which I adore, isn't that easy for me in rural Sussex and I wouldn't call it a store cupboard item).
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An inspiration 26 May 2002
By A Customer
I've been a vegetarian since 1985 and have phases of being pretty tired of the food I eat because of the "same-oldness" of vegetarian cookery writing, where everybody seems to copy everybody elses's recipes with small variations. This book is different. It's not written from the point of view of offering veggie recipes but from the point of view of how Italians use vegetables. The recipes I have tried have been delicious and inspiring and have got me using vegetables and combinations I'd never really have thought of using before. I'd recommend it to anyone, veggie or not, who wants to find yummy ways of eating vegetables, and absolutely to anyone who adores Italian food.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars simple, easy and delicious 21 Feb. 2008
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
If you're bored of mashed potato or boiled carrots, this book will provide you with plenty of ideas on how to prepare vegetables in a new, original way. I have tried many lovely dishes from this book; my favourites are the carrots boiled in cream and basil (absolutely delicious), the layered potato and tomato pie, celery risotto, chard and mushroom fettucine (I've never liked chard very much and I loved this dish!), the orange and fennel salad, lentil soup with butternut squash and fennel, the pear, parmesan and celery salad, and many more.

Many of the recipes from Verdura have become staples in my household : spinach risotto, mozarella, potato and tomato pie, courgettes stuffed with mushrooms, porcini risotto, fennel soup. If you think vegetables are boring, you'll change your mind quickly after trying this book out. I too thought spinach was bland; not any more. Today I make the spinach risotto at least once a week and have stopped complaining that it has appeared in my vegetable box again. All the ingredients in Verdura are easy to find in your local shop (you won't need truffle paste or stuffed vine leaves or durum wheat flour)and rely on good quality olive oil and balsamic vinegar to bring out the tatste of the vegetables rather than soaking them in tons of mayonnaise or salad dressing. I give this book 4 stars rather than 5 because there have been 2 or 3 recipes that were complete failures - such as the marinated raw courgettes, but perhaps Italian sun-drenched courgettes straight from the market taste better than ours? However, despite the occasional recipes which I found less successful, the majority have been absolute winners and I'd recommend the book to anyone who loves their vegetables.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A true taste of Italy 1 July 2006
By A. Ball
I have about 3000 cookbooks and this is in my top 10. I'm not a vegetarian but reading this, I wonder why I ever eat anything other than vegetables? Viana's recipes were a revelation in their simplicity and vibrant flavours. The raw pasta sauces transformed my summer eating; Spaghetti alla Trapanese, where pasta with a fiery chilli tomato sauce is punctuated by shots of hot, crisp little squares of roast potato is just genius. And for the lover of Italy and how one eats there, this book is sheer poetry...'this satisfying salad is like a tableau of Italian country life. One can imagine the ingredients casually arranged on a rough-hewn kitchen table waiting to be gathered into a salad: freshly cooked garbanzo and borlotti beans in earthenware dishes: tender green beans, luscious tomatoes and a small bouquet of parsley and basil all just picked from the garden; and potatoes from the cellar, still caked with fresh soil. Outside, the sky blazes a brilliant blue and the fields are alive with vines and orchards.' I just love that: forget it, Easyjet, I'm there already!
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