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145 of 145 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for Italians too!
I have a confession to make: I am Italian, born and raised in Milan, and Jaime's is one of my favorite cookbooks ever. It sits in my kitchen right next to the big "authentic" Italian tomes on regional cooking, but it gets used much more often. The recipes are great, fresh and traditional with a few personal twists, plenty of flavor, and are all quite easy to make. Some of...
Published on 28 Nov. 2006 by a reader

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lovely book but doesn't wow me...yet!
This book was bought for me as a present and I would not have chosen it for myself. It is a lovely book where Jamie presents provincial Italian cooking to his readership. It's a great read but I haven't tried many of the recipes yet. Why is this? I don't know, maybe for me they seem too much like hard work. I have tried the artichoke and cannelini bruschettas (lovely)...
Published on 14 May 2010 by Rumplestaleskin


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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jamie's Italy, 8 Jan. 2006
By 
Rich Milligan (Thatcham, Berkshire) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Jamie's Italy (Hardcover)
Firstly I must admit I am not a cook of any degree. I don’t even particularly like cooking and am never really tempted to experiment in the kitchen. That said I am a fan of food and love to read about the history and culture behind certain dishes.
Jamie’s Italy for those living under stones is the book to accompany Jamie Oliver’s successful TV series of him travelling the length and breadth of Italy meeting the people and more importantly sampling the wonderful food he finds there.
The book is a really lovely celebration of this, over 300 pages long and packed to the gunnels with great colour photos and over 120 different Italian recipes.
But what I feel really makes the book stand out is Jamie’s commentary on the whole experience. Admittedly reading a meal recipe is never going to be the most riveting thing to read but it’s in the background and introductory notes to each section that Jamie comes into his own. Written in a style relaxed enough to never come over as superior or condescending but with enough gravitas and depth of knowledge that you know you’re in the hands of an expert.
As I say, I’m not a chef so perhaps I’m not the best to judge this book, even though I have more or less read it cover to cover, but going by some of the mouth-watering meals that have come out of the kitchen lately, courtesy of my wife, Jamie must be doing something right!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lovely book but doesn't wow me...yet!, 14 May 2010
By 
This review is from: Jamie's Italy (Paperback)
This book was bought for me as a present and I would not have chosen it for myself. It is a lovely book where Jamie presents provincial Italian cooking to his readership. It's a great read but I haven't tried many of the recipes yet. Why is this? I don't know, maybe for me they seem too much like hard work. I have tried the artichoke and cannelini bruschettas (lovely) but otherwise there's a recipe with chickpeas that interests me but I haven't taken the plunge yet.

I haven't slung this book in the charity shop sack because I think that, while this book doesn't captivate me at present, it may prove to be a slow burner. The research and execution of this book are first rate (the photographs create a lovely backdrop to the provincial recipes) so it would seem criminal to disguard something with such potential.

If you are looking for an 'Italian'cookbook that shows you how to make bog standard pizzas and pasta, you will not like this (Jamie informs us that Italians don't make pizza: they go to the pizzeria). However, if you want to transport yourself to 'real' Italy then Jamie shows you a snapshot of this varied and regionally inspired cuisine.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very tasty!, 19 Feb. 2006
By 
Jr Lorrimer "jlorrimer" (Oakworth) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Jamie's Italy (Hardcover)
I'm a bit of a starter in the kitchen, but this book has really got me into the joys of cooking great food. Very easy to follow and with easy to source ingredients, I have so far managed to produce ten mouth watering meals within two weeks of buying this book. What I have found surprising is the amout of recipes that use dried chillies. I never realised Italin food could have such a kick to it! Try the baked mushrooms with the ricotta filling - very easy and totally tasty. Good effort Essex bloke!
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62 of 70 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bringing Italian Cooking to a Kitchen Near You!, 18 Oct. 2005
This review is from: Jamie's Italy (Hardcover)
With a more 'dynamic-looking' cover than is the norm for Jamie, the contents are the typical easy-to-read format we have come to expect from the Oliver stable.
Well presented with superb photography throughout and a book that you can pick up to read at any time, in any place.
The bulk of the recipes are, in honesty, nothing new, but the sensational use of the 'Oliver speak' just give them that fresh appeal and the urge to get into the kitchen and actually do it!

'In writing this book I didn't just want to give you a collection of Italian recipes, I wanted to share some experiences with you, too. So I wrote it while I travelled the country; working and eating and meeting people off the beaten track. I wanted to find the food of the 'real' Italy and to celebrate the recipes from the people I met along the way. I wanted to experience
the spirit of Italy that makes cooking and eating so central in family life - And I want you to experience it, too - I want you to go and find the old woman making polenta in the town of Bari in Puglia, or go and visit the lovely people who run the Petorlo estate in Tuscany......I want you to buy 12 artichokes from the weathered old codger in the market in Rome...............'.
'What can I say about 'pasta'.......?
Well if you want the real truth, the moment I stopped cooking sloppy, sticky, uninteresting, predictable pasta and started making pasta that was delicious, using the same commodities, and ingredients that Italians use at home, was the moment my cooking changed forever. Have a go at making it and enjoy it. Remember...it's just about the knack - it's not rocket science!'
Speaking of 'rocket' - the recipe for 'Spaghetti con Gamberetti e Rucola' (Spaghetti with Prawns and Rocket) is a wonderful and colourful combination of flavours.
It's the 'heat 3 good glugs of extra virgin olive oil' ........that just endorses this recipe as a 'Jamie version' and moves him well away from the pretentious 'precise amounts' brigade of chefs!
It is also nice to see another young chef acknowledge the remarkable talents of Elizabeth David and if you don't already have a copy of her Italian Food, this book is also well worth a place on the kitchen bookshelf.

But back to Jamie's Italy- [..]
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Tasty!, 27 Nov. 2010
This review is from: Jamie's Italy (Hardcover)
There are some really nice recipes in the book, many of which are pretty easy to follow for any keen amateur chefs.

My only slight criticism is that there is a lot of padding too; lots of big double page photos of Jamie stuffing his face and being the mockney man-about-Italy. I though I'd bought a recipe book, not somebody else's holiday photo album!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars probably the most authentically Italian book Jamie's done, 30 Mar. 2010
By 
LH "Ex-pat Wife" (Paderborn, Germany) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Jamie's Italy (Paperback)
We live in Italy, and are Jamie fans, and find this to be his most authentically Italian book to date. We've been borrowing a friend's and have now bought our own copy.
The recipes are good, but the reason I've given this book 4 stars is that some of the recipes need to be taken as guides rather than instructions. We found that we have to trust our instinct in some cases, but in most he is spot on. Like all authentic, rustic Italian recipes cannot be easily translated to grams and ounces, as they rely on the cook's judgement as well as the quality and consistency of the fresh ingredients at the time of cooking. This is true of authentic recipes from all over the world.
One reviewer gave the book 1 star because the recipes were "tasteless mush". With the relevant recipes, I've found you have to practise common sense and judge the proportions and timings(and your oven/stove) according to the ingredients and quanitities on the day. If you think it has too much bread, or needs more/less time, etc, trust yourself.
The reason I've given this 4 stars, though, is that it misses out some classics, or messes about with them, and one or two are re-interpreted for the UK market. Jamie says he'd like to live here one dya, in the foreword, and all I can say is that he's going to have to accept that when in Italy you have to do things the Italian way or you'll get very frustrated and run back to Essex where you can add (the horror!) chilli to a mozarella salad (the thought alone makes me feel ill, I've been here so long!).
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a pleasure to read and to look at, 23 Feb. 2006
By 
a miller (Edinburgh, Scotland United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Jamie's Italy (Hardcover)
This book is amazing, a celebration of life, beauty and food. The photographs are wonderful and the notes that come wih the recipes are a wonderful account of Italians' passion for food and life. I am no beginner in the kitchen but still the book was really inspiring. Jamie encourages you to use good quality ingredients and a lot of passion in your cooking, and well, that is what it's all about. I am Spanish and know quite a lot about authentic Italian food, and it's quite clear that Jamie knows what he's talking about. One of the best cookery books in my -very big- collection.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Book, 1 Aug. 2006
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This review is from: Jamie's Italy (Hardcover)
My Husband and I bought this book after spending a week in Florence, we wanted to recreate some of the superb cuisine we sampled there and we weren't disappointed! We already own one of Jamie's other books and his recipes are always easy to follow, my Husband even has a go at some of them, (before now 'beans on toast' was his speciality!)

Do another one Jamie!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars No nonsense, excellent cooking, 15 Nov. 2007
By 
A. Marczak "mazzarak" (Mordor) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Jamie's Italy (Hardcover)
The Brits are now well familiar with Jamie Oliver's image on TV and the media generally, but it needs to be re-stated that his reputation has been built on his recipes and his cooking.

This book lists dozens of recipes, and is written in the no nonsense style you'd expect from Jamie. Whilst some instructions are a bit vague, and you find yourself adding "some" oil and "a bit of " salt, the enthusiasm in each page shines through, and the enjoyment of cooking is passed to the reader.

A great cookbook for those who like their food uncomplicated.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars superb & simple, 21 Jan. 2009
By 
This review is from: Jamie's Italy (Paperback)
I have always been a fan of jamies and I think he does a lot of good campaigning here in england, and I always watch his TV shows. This however is the first book of his I have bought and I have to say its brilliant! As usual jamie makes cooking fun with his great attitude. I bought this along with giorgio locatelli's made in italy and they are both lovely books. Jamie's is more down to earth and easier to play around with. I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys italian cuisine, a bargain at under £7!!!
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Jamie's Italy
Jamie's Italy by Jamie Oliver (Hardcover - 3 Oct. 2005)
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