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The Il Fornaio Pasta Book: Authentic Recipes Celebrating Italy's Regional Pasta Dishes Hardcover – August 1, 2002


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 180 pages
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books (August 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0811830160
  • ISBN-13: 978-0811830164
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 1 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #579,061 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

In Italy, eating is about much more than simple nourishment--it is a pastime, an art. Italians love to eat, and love even more to share with others the authentic dishes of their regions. Here, Maurizio Mazzon, executive chef of Il Fornaio's almost two dozen restaurants, indulges that cultural urge with a collection of his own favorite recipes gathered from all 20 regions of Italy. Not just another pasta book, this one offers unusual recipes that you won't likely find outside of Italy: Beet-Flavored Pasta Stuffed with a Ricotta-Beet Filling Topped with Brown Butter and Poppy Seeds, Eggplant-Potato Dumplings with a Tomato-Basil Sauce, and Pasta Stuffed with a Wild-Greens Filling and Topped with a Buttermilk Sauce, to name just a few. Mazzon also includes simple yet elegant versions of classics found in Italian restaurants throughout the U.S., such as Spaghettini with Tomato-Basil Sauce, Prawns and Pasta Ribbons with Pesto, and Buccatini alla Carbonara. Many of the recipes are quite complicated, but the elegant results are well worth the effort. One of Mazzon's favorite Italian proverbs says, "When the stomach is full, the heart is happy." If this is true, Mazzon's book is sure to leave a trail of happy hearts. --Robin Donovan

From Publishers Weekly

Mazzon, who oversees the chefs and kitchens for the high-end California chain Il Fornaio, hails from the Veneto region of Italy, and his bias is obvious in this charming if slightly uneven roundup of regional pasta specialties. While some regions, such as Molise and Abruzzo, are all but ignored here, there are eight recipes offered from the Veneto. Still, it's hard to complain when the area is home to such delicious specialties as Potato Dumplings with Calamari and Radicchio, or Thin Pasta Strands in Tomato-Anchovy Sauce. Mazzon hasn't missed any of the big, familiar dishes here: there is Butternut Squash Pasta Filled with a Butternut Squash, Parmesan and Walnut Filling from the Emilia-Romagna region; and Cauliflower, Golden Raisins and Pine Nuts Tossed with Small Pasta Tubes from Sicily. Other treats include the Umbrian Pasta Strands with Black Truffle Sauce and the Small Pasta Tubes and Lamb Sauce with Aged Ricotta from Basilicata. A number of more challenging recipes namely those that call for making pasta from scratch, including one for Sardegna's saffron-tinged malloreddus dumplings and a few original presentations, like Prawns and Pasta Ribbons with Parsley Pesto (served in a hollowed-out lemon), lift this book above its peers. Some readers may be irritated by the book's insistence on translating pasta names into English (is there anyone left in America who needs "spaghetti" translated as "pasta strands"?), but the dishes themselves look irresistible, thanks to the sumptuous photo illustrations.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on September 29, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Deliciously mouth-watering pasta meals from traditional regional recipes, described in a no-nonsense way with beautiful illustrations.
Italian food is probably my favourite, but there are some novel recipes and combinations of ingredients that I haven't come across before - and my Mother-in-law is Italian - I can't wait to try 'Rotolina di Pasta all'Emiliana'.
Each region is represented, with a concise introduction on their salient features and specialties, followed by a map, and selected recipes that typify each region - but not necessarily their signature dishes - which makes a refreshing change.
The presentation is good, with one page per recipe, often with a close-up photo of the finished product on the facing page and an interesting anecdote to accompany the recipe. The wide format ensures that the book stays open at that page, without having to weight it down or break the spine (something not often considered).
Aimed at the American market it has quantities in US measures, but with a conversion table at the back, along with a list of addresses and websites to get utensils and ingredients from.
An excellent book, Maurizio's Mama would be proud of him! *****
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on January 10, 2003
Format: Hardcover
In The Il Fornaio Pasta Book: Authentic Recipes Celebrating Italy's Regional Pasta Dishes, Italian culinary expert Maurizio Mazzon (he is also a native of the Veneto region), offers a wealth of fine dining selections that would grace any menu and satisfy even the most discerning palate. An informative introduction is followed with a Pasta Glossary, as well as sections devoted to ingredients, equipment, classic pasta recipes, techniques for cooking perfect pasta, and advice on how pasta should be served. Then come a host of recipes drawn from every region of Italy. From Frenette con Pesto alla Genovese (Poasta Ribbons with Pesto, Green Beans, and Potatoes); to Canederli Tirolesi (A Trio of Spinach, Mushroom, and Ricotta-Pancetta Dumplings Served in Chicken Stock); to Crespelle alla Fiorentina (Delicate Fresh Crepes with a Spinach-Ricotta Filling); to Vermicelli alla Vongole (Thin Pasta Strands with Fresh Clams and Garlic-White Wine Sauce), The Il Fornaio Pasta Book is a gourmet's delight and a warmly recommended addition to any kitchen cookbook collection.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Marilyn on April 1, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Il Fornaio is one of my favorite restaurants, so I was delighted to find this book. While I don't make pasta from scratch too often, I do use dried pasta often. The recipes in this book are very good in that they are not complicated but, like my Grandmother's dishes, make the best use of simple ingredients. Well, you CAN get fancy if you wish, but my inclination is to use really good ingredients, whether imported pasta, canned or fresh tomatoes, organic greens, shellfish, meat, etc. and let them come together in a splendid finished dish. My grandparents were from Calabria so I couldn't wait to try the Cavatelli con Braciolette (small pasta shells with small meat rolls). My family loved it! 'Nuff said?
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By AK on February 5, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Great recipes, not too difficult to do. The book in excellent condition, it is only missing the jacket cover which is not a problem.
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