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La Cucina: The Regional Cooking of Italy Hardcover – 20 Oct 2009

4.6 out of 5 stars 13 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 948 pages
  • Publisher: Rizzoli International Publications; 01 edition (20 Oct. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0847831477
  • ISBN-13: 978-0847831470
  • Product Dimensions: 18.5 x 7.5 x 26 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 224,970 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

As one would expect from a book put together by the members of the Italian Academy of Cuisine, this represents the apex of Italian food culture. The book is an essential contribution to our understanding of the intricate complexities of real Italian food. I have found here recipes unknown to me, despite my having studied the subject for more than five decades. --Comm. Antonio Carluccio, OBE

An extensive cookery book that every Italian cook should read to give themselves a refreshing insight into the greatest cuisine of the world. Many of us feel that we know the regional dishes of Italy, yet this bible of a book broadens and expands our horizons to the unexpected. This is a very important cook book if you love diversity and need to be reminded of meals and dishes eaten while there. It will teach you the traditions and ingredients of Italy and an understanding of Italian s approach cooking a book to truly treasure. --Rose Gray & Ruth Rogers - The River Cafe

About the Author

The Italian Academy of Cuisine was founded in 1953 in Milan to preserve the gastronomical heritage of Italy. Each year it hosts a number of education programs and awards prizes to leaders in gastronomy. Among its publications are a monthly magazine and a restaurant guide.


Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This is the best Italian cookbook on the market. There are no pictures, and some of the old recipes are without measures (so guess) therefore some cooks will not like it. However I've tried at least half of the recipes that I didn't know before and they all worked and the ideas even introduced me to new combinations. Forget "The Silver Spoon" try this. I agree that the format is not the best but you don't cook the book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have only just opened this book, so I will not dare to comment on the recipes. However the book is not "English" but American, so the amounts of dry ingredients are shown in cups, the oven temperatures in F not C and the names of some of the ingredients American. Some people will be able to cope with this, but an American cup does not equate to a weight, but to a volume, so either you need a chart or an American cup measure. It is ironic that the original Italian will be in metric!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book as a kind of a follow on for myself from Marcella Hazan's wonderful Italian cookery bible: The Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking. It is certainly comprehensive and there are some wonderful recipes. However, in contrast to Mrs Hazan not all of the recipes work out well. There have been a couple that have failed to turn out as expected and, in common with another reviewer, I have had to use a bit of adaptation along the way. And the imperial system of cups is a bit annoying, although one should not stick rigidly to measurements anyway.

That said, it is a cook book of epic proportions. There is a recipe for using up your unwanted quadropeds (donkey stew) and even one for frog risotto!

There is a great little recipe for Ditalli pasta with anchovies and sun-dried tomatoes. I seem to recall a similar one in Rick Stein's Mediterranean book. Weird...

Worth buying if you like Italian food, but buy Marcella Hazan's one first.
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Format: Hardcover
I got this as a winter present for myself and overall I'm very pleased with it. The recipes have a kind of charm to them; they are not over-descriptive and sometimes you have to use a little common sense to work out how to make them, so perhaps it's not ideal for the novice chef. There is a wealth of interesting and unusual recipes inside and regular little sections of local customs regarding the food.

As the above review said, the measurements are all in cups and imperial, but there is a conversion chart near the end. My main problem with this recipe book is the difficulty of finding specific recipes. For example, if you fancy making some ravioli, you can't just look up 'ravioli' in the index. You can look up pasta, for which there are quite a few recipes (as you can imagine) but then you have to scan through the whole list to find the ravioli ones. Rather than being listed in a sub-heading, or as 'ravioli, stuffed with salmon', they are just listed in the index with their full name which rarely begins with the word 'ravioli'. Even though the book has some large sections (the pasta one alone running to more than 100 pages) the recipes within don't seem to be grouped according to any particular system (type of pasta, type of main ingredient, etc). Overall, it does make finding what you want a bit of a struggle.

Sometimes, however, this more random approach means you stumble across recipes you might otherwise not bother with! Overall, well worth the money and I don't regret buying it for one moment.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is truly amazing! I love to cook and I have a large amount of cooking books of all backgrounds, but this is by far my favourite.

The recipes are of varying difficulty level, from veg simply turned in some garlic oil to sweet and sour meatballs in tomato sauce (DO THIS ONE!). I prefer the recipes in this book to those from the Silver Spoon as well, as even for the same dishes, these are always better. It really speaks to the cooking experience of the grandmothers and -fathers from whom these recipes come.

Which brings me to the one drawback some readers might find in the book: Cooking experience needed to understand the recipes. You certainly need to have that. It might say stuff like: Make a white sauce. So you do need to know how to do that. On the other hand, I don't think you'll find anything in this book that you couldn't learn from YouTube in the space of 15 minutes.
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Format: Hardcover
Awesome book, sooo complete. Only problem is the U.S. units used with no metric units on the side. Hate having to convert everything before on the computer..
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Good regional Italian book, not many photos, more of a read, but excellent ideas, history and information on the various regions, combined with flavours
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