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Italian Home Cooking: 125 Recipes to Comfort Your Soul Hardcover – November 16, 2010


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Healthy Pasta by Joseph Bastianich
Healthy Pasta
Enjoy 100 great tasting healthy pasta recipes from a culinary family. Learn more | See more by the Bastianich family
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Kyle Books (November 16, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1906868271
  • ISBN-13: 978-1906868277
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 0.8 x 10.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #588,177 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

There remains a central difference between home cooking--comfort food--and professional cooking, notes dellaCroce (The Classic Italian Cookbook). Cucina casalinga is casual and relaxed, designed to sustain the body and uplift the spirit. The James Beard-award winner puts her money where her mouth is with a lively focus on the sustaining, casual, even homely appetizers, pastas, entrees, and desserts discovered during her time in Italy or handed down from her Italian antecedents. Christopher Hirsheimer's sensuous photography makes recipes as diverse as Carrot and Fennel Soup and Angry Lobsters pop off the page. Wide-ranging enough to be comprehensive yet focused enough to be selective, dellaCroce organizes her effort into 10 chapters, ranging from Welcoming Dishes, like Sage Leaves and Zucchini Blossoms or her Pissaladella pizza-like flatbread, to For the Love of Vegetables, such as Potatoes Schiscionera from Sardinia, to the especially notable Baby's First Food, making it a great choice for parents. dellaCroce often brings family lore into the mix, reminding readers that her knowledge comes from the source: Italians cooking authentic Italian food. Her latest is a keeper. Photos. (Oct.) (Publishers Weekly )

From the Publisher

Spaghetti with Sauteed Radicchio

Serves 2 to 4

I corresponded with Paolo Lanapoppi, a Venetian writer and gondola restorer, for some time before I finally tracked him down in Venice. When we finally met, the radicchio of nearby Treviso was in full flower, and he cooked up this delightful homespun dish for lunch over talk of carnevale and gondolas. Paolo topped the pasta generously with Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese at the table, but it is equally delicious without the cheese.

6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 red onion, thinly sliced and then chopped
8 to 10 ounces radicchio, preferably the elongated Tardivo variety, cut into julienne and then roughly chopped
½ cup hot water
½ teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
¾ pound imported Italian spaghetti
2 tablespoons kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese, for serving

1. In an ample skillet, warm the olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the onion and sauté until nicely softened and lightly colored, about 6 minutes. Toss in the radicchio, and use a wooden spoon to coat it evenly in the olive oil. Add the water, continuing to toss. Cover and continue to cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until the radicchio is tender, 10 to 12 minutes. Add the sea salt, cover, and set aside.

2. Bring a large pot filled with water over high heat to a rolling boil. Stir in the pasta and kosher salt. Cook, always over the highest heat possible and stirring constantly to prevent the pasta strands from sticking together, until the spaghetti is almost cooked, about 6 minutes. Add a glass of cold water to the pot to arrest the boiling and drain immediately, setting aside about 1 cup of the cooking water. Add the spaghetti to the skillet, and return the heat to high. Use 2 long forks to distribute all the ingredients evenly, about 1 minute. If necessary, add a little of the pasta water to moisten so that everything mixes nicely together. Serve immediately with plenty of pepper and pass the Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese at the table.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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See all 16 customer reviews
This recipe is so delicious!
DrOnRolls
Julia della Croce is an award winning chef who has a master's grasp of the fine art of Italian cooking.
Alice in Wonderland
Best italian cook book i own!
Emily Waesche

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By M. Schmidt on November 13, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This book is a gem. It is authentic and simple. I dream about the photos as I drift of to sleep at night. Seriously. I'm particularly taken with Julia's "Spaghetti with Sauteed Radicchio" and her "Zia Rita's Stuffed Beef Braciole". My sister-in-law recently recreated her "Nonna Giulia's Polenta Layer Cake with Meat Sauce" and I think it soothed her soul for the entire month. This book is a treasure trove of passed down, seductive Italian cooking that will please both the gourmands and the kids in your life. Brava!
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Alice in Wonderland VINE VOICE on November 15, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Julia della Croce is an award winning chef who has a master's grasp of the fine art of Italian cooking. She has a number of excellent recipe books out there already, and this one is fine addition to the library. If you like fine Italian food, then this is a book you should check out. It has lots of good, easy to make recipes

(Review of Italian Home Cooking by Julia della Croce)
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By DrOnRolls on December 5, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
...but so many mistakes.

Every time I cook from this book I feel this satisfaction and a great desire to thank Ms. Della Croce. The recipes are so fantastic and so simple. I could not believe how good they turn out!

My only addition to some (well, many) recipes is the heat: one or two serranos. I like to make many recipes "angry," like her angry chicken or lobster. We love them this way. Our friends that were lucky to taste these recipes have bought this cookbook as well.

On a sad note, this book was printed in China. It was probably proofread in China. There are some mistakes, like absent references (you see XX instead of a page number). But they don't matter. I wish the book was not printed in China. Print it in Italy! They have printing presses, don't they?

Here are some of my adjustments to the recipes:
Carrots on p.164 (I am cooking them right now along with the oven-fried chicken): do not add water. It will not evaporate from a closed skillet in 30 min. And add vinegar after carrots caramelized. Otherwise your carrots won't look like the carrots in the photo.

Polenta meat cake (p. 104, made it yesterday): Triple the meat and double the cheese (there is just not enough for a recipe of polenta.) Cook polenta in a pressure cooker (Fissler!) for 15 min. Place half of polenta into an oiled baking dish and the second half onto a counter (or a smooth cutting board). Keep the baking dish and the cutting board side by side to make rectangles of polenta equal in size.

Nevertheless, there is always something from this book on our dining table: one, two, even three dishes at once. I LOVE these recipes!
Thank you, Thank you, Ms. Della Croce!!!!! You brought so much peace to my mind and comfort to our stomachs!
Read more ›
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Christopher Falman on February 28, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This cookbook is a joy to look through. Tantalizing photos, beautifully designed. It's a great book to have. I've made the pizza/calzone dough recipe three times. It's the lightest, moistest, most delicious dough. While I give this book 5 stars, it's closer to 4.5. As beautiful as the book is and as delicious as everything is, some of the recipes seems to be missing some steps. For example, the pizza dough recipe tells you to combine water and yeast and set it aside. Then combine some other wet ingredients and set aside. And then the dry ingredients. Sunddenly, you are waiting for the dough to come together in the mixer. For the experienced cook or baker, it's easy enough to figure out what to do, but beginners or those who aren't sure of themselves in the kitchen might get confused. That aside, this is a great book the I highly recommend to everyone.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Carol on January 3, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Very good purchase. It contained a lot of dishes served in Italian restaurants. I am quite pleased with this purchase. I haven't tried any of the recipes but am looking forward to do so.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By F. E. De Sanctis on October 25, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
What a nice cookbook! Ms. della Croce has a relaxed and confident approach to her food, and you can tell its HER food. Lovely, honest stuff & great pictures too.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By BlogOnBooks on January 24, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Julia Della Croce knows her Italian cooking. An award winning teacher, cook and media personality, Della Croce teaches Italian cooking to students and chefs in the U.S. and Europe. Now she has just published 125 of her favorite `comfort food' Italian recipes and if the meals are as good as the pictures, this is one delicious volume. From her fruity neapolitan tomato sauce ("Pomarola") to Zia Rita's Stuffed Beef Braciole, her emphasis on cucina casalinga is, as she says, "casual and relaxed and designed to sustain the body and uplift the spirit." One look at these delightful dishes and we'd have to agree.
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Format: Hardcover
... with great photos and interesting commentary about many of the recipes. More importantly all the recipes I've tried have been unique, fairly easy and have turned out great. I cook mostly Italian dishes and I've gotten rid of nearly all the cookbooks I've collected over the years except the few I consider to be indispensable. I might add this one to that select group.
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More About the Author

Julia della Croce is a journalist, author and teacher. She is regarded as a leading authority on Italian cooking and "one of the country's top-flight cookbook writers" - New York Newsday, 1995.

As a restaurant critic, book reviewer, syndicated columnist and correspondent her work has appeared in newspapers and magazines including The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, The New Yotk Times Magazine, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Chicago Tribune, COOK'S, New York Newsday, Food & Wine, COOK'S ILLUSTRATED, TIME (Canada) and Art & Antiques.

Julia della Croce is the author of 13 books, the latest are Italian Home Cooking and The Pasta Book. She has been broadcast extensively on American, Canadian and British radio and has made many appearances on national and regional television. She has also been featured on Italian and Japanese television.

The recognition she has received includes an award in 1992 by The James Beard Foundation distinguishing her as one of "America's Best Cooking Teachers." In 1993, she was honored for her contribution to Italian culinary literature at the Italian Embassy in Washington D.C. Her fourth book, The Vegetarian Table: Italy, was nominated for a James Beard Award in 1994. In 1999, she won the prestigious Diplome d'Honneur of France for the French language translation of her sixth book, La bonne cuisine italienne (Solar, Paris). In 2003, her book, Veneto, was nominated "Best Italian Cuisine Book" at the World Cookbook Awards in Spain.

Julia della Croce has lectured about the history of Italian cooking and culture for the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C., The Balch Institute for Ethnic Studies in Philadelphia, N.A.S.F.T in New York and San Diego, The New York Culinary Historians, the American Institute of Wine and Food, and other prestigious trade and educational institutions.