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Italian Cuisine: A Cultural History (Arts and Traditions of the Table: Perspectives on Culinary History) Hardcover – September 17, 2003

ISBN-13: 978-0231122320 ISBN-10: 0231122322

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Italian Cuisine: A Cultural History (Arts and Traditions of the Table: Perspectives on Culinary History) + Science in the Kitchen and the Art of Eating Well (Lorenzo Da Ponte Italian Library)
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Product Details

  • Series: Arts and Traditions of the Table: Perspectives on Culinary History
  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Columbia University Press (September 17, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0231122322
  • ISBN-13: 978-0231122320
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 6.3 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #199,889 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

The latest volume in the Art and Traditions of the Table series focuses on the cultural history of Italian cooking. With an authoritative command of the subject, Capatti and Montanari trace the changing vocabulary of Italy's earliest cookbooks from classical Latin to vernacular Italian, showing how this shift reflected the increasing significance of passing culinary skill from one generation to the next. Bit by bit, Italian cookbook writers also eliminated Gallicisms from their vocabulary to express the uniqueness of Italian cooking. Pleasures of the table then, as today, related to images of health and well being, the north favoring voluptuous fatness, the south tending to ascetic thinness. The authors limn the decline of the servant class and the gradual shift to femininity in the Italian kitchen. Contrary to contemporary emphases on Italian cookery as an agglomeration of microcuisines, Capatti and Montanari stress its unity across the nation. This relentlessly academic work has an impressive bibliography of historic Italian sources. Mark Knoblauch
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Review

An exhaustive and detailed investigation and will prove to be a valuable textbook for many foodies.

(Economist)

A scholarly, discursive exploration of techniques, taste, service and technology.

(Times Literary Supplement)

With an authoritative command of the subject, Capatti and Montanari trace the changing vocabulary of Italy's earliest cookbooks from classical Latin to vernacular Italian, showing how this shift reflected the increasing significance of passing culinary skill from one generation to the next... This relentlessly academic work has an impressive bibliography of historic Italian sources.

(Mark Knoblauch Booklist)

Adds a world of history to our understanding, making the case for the existence of a true Italian culinary tradition in spite of the regionality of product.... It is an engrossing, richly documented text.

(Bell'Italia Magazine)

Italian Cuisine is not simply another history.

(Priscilla Ferguson Journal of Modern History)

A must-buy if you love Italian cuisine.

(Antonio Carluccio The Daily Express)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

35 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Jason B. Taylor on March 9, 2006
Format: Hardcover
"Italian Cuisine" is one of those books that explores the deep cultural history of Italian Cooking. It covers the broad range of roman times to current times and the individual histories of food, preparation, presentation, and even the history of the fork. Full of knowledge, insights, and history, this book is not for casual reading, but for the cook seeking a deep knowledge of everyting Italian.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By mjplatt on January 19, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Bought this as a Christmas gift for my brother-in-law who is a serious cook. He enjoyed it very much. If you have a "chef" in your family, this is a good choice.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An important book of culinary, cultural history, and scholarship. A must read for anyone interested in Italian History and Culture.
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