Lidia Cooks from the Heart of Italy: A Feast of 175 Regional Recipes by Lidia Matticchio Bastianich and Tanya Bastianich Manuali

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Notes about Recipes in this book

  • Maccheroni with fresh lemon & cream

    • Breadcrumbs on February 24, 2013

      p. 246 The Italian name for this dish is Maccheroni all’Agro and Agro means “sour” – indeed this dish makes you pucker with delight! The bite of the wine, lemon juice and zest is nicely countered by the richness of the butter and cream. The egg-based Maccheroni alla Chiatarra also adds a richness that works beautifully with the zesty lemon infused cream. This is an unusual and special dish that I look forward to enjoying again. I think it would be wonderful with some fresh basil as well.

  • Pasta with tender greens

    • Lindalib on August 04, 2012

      This was just ok. We generally like things with a bit of heat, but the 1/2 teaspoon of pepperocini overwhelmed the greens. We probably won't make this again, but would cut back to 1/4 tsp. of pepperocini if we did. On a positive note, it was a good way to use up our CSA greeens.

    • ellencooks on March 16, 2021

      I added some toasted breadcrumbs and oregano. Really good!

  • Spaghetti in tomato apple sauce

    • bgood on May 12, 2012

      Surprsingly great combination, would go well with Piave cheese. Pumped it up with a dash of plum vinegar, apple cider vinegar would probably work as well or better

  • Tuna Genova-style

    • bellatavia on March 04, 2016

      A tasty meal -- we found the cooking times were short in the recipe. Also, the big pieces of tuna are a lot of a single serving.

  • Spaghetti with clam sauce

    • bellatavia on November 09, 2015

      This recipe was delicious! I found the proportion of olive oil to be unnecessarily high -- if I made this again i would cut the measurement in half. Also, I think the recipe could accommodate maybe 25%-50% more artichokes. (I love artichokes!)

  • Whole-grain spaetzle

    • twoyolks on April 17, 2015

      The whole wheat was nice addition to traditional spaetzle.

  • Traditional rice & chicken

    • twoyolks on January 04, 2013

      This would be very good using farro in place of the rice.

  • Skillet-braised chicken bundles

    • twoyolks on December 11, 2015

      These were good but not amazing. The bacon doesn't really contribute much flavor nor does the filling. It mostly tasted like chicken braised in tomato sauce.

  • Almond cake alla Mantovana

    • twoyolks on March 27, 2012

      Italian style cake. Not overly sweet and not overly moist. Very good with vanilla ice cream.

  • Maccheroni with meat sauce

    • twoyolks on January 02, 2018

      This was pretty good but not great. The sauce is meat heavy. I felt like the sauce was missing deeper more complicated flavors.

  • Spaghetti with calamari, scallops & shrimp

    • twoyolks on October 17, 2016

      This was pretty good but didn't seem to quite live up to the quality of good seafood. The seafood didn't really add much flavor to the sauce nor did the sauce add any flavor the seafood. I omitted the calamari as the grocery store didn't have any.

  • Potatoes with peperoncino

    • twoyolks on February 02, 2016

      Despite the header stating that this will change how you cook potatoes, it did not happen for me. This tastes like boiled potatoes with olive oil, garlic, and a little bit of red pepper flakes. Not particularly bad but not particularly good.

    • ellencooks on March 16, 2021

      On the show I seem to remember she fried the potatoes after boiling them. I did this the second time and much preferred them with that texture.

  • Pasta with baked cherry tomatoes

    • twoyolks on September 07, 2012

      I suspect this would work better with the optional ricotta salata in place of the traditional ricotta.

  • Wedding soup

    • okmosa on April 18, 2021

      I was pleasantly surprised by the flavor of the largely vegetarian broth. However, cooking the zucchini and escarole for so long brought them to mush which was an unpleasant texture. The bulk Italian sausage I used for the meatballs normally is very flavorful but the meatballs lacked flavor - I wonder if it was because they were poached separately. The recipe also calls for a very large amount of water that I halved which seems to be the right decision. It’s a decent soup that I will likely modify and check out other recipes for inspiration.

    • Zosia on January 04, 2015

      Loved this! Huge flavour from simple ingredients especially the pestata/vegetable paste. Delicious with or without the sausage meatballs. The recipe makes an enormous amount; I used the full amount of vegetables but half the water for a more manageable amount and included Parmesan rinds for extra flavour.

  • Maccheroni with zucchini

    • Zosia on September 12, 2018

      I was pleasantly surprised by this recipe which I made to use up some zucchini. The saffron complemented the zucchini without overwhelming it and the sauce was creamy without there being any cream in the recipe. Having said that, it was a little too one-note for me to serve as a main but it was successful as a side to some fish.

  • Rice with fresh sage

    • Zosia on January 04, 2015

      Family really enjoyed this "cheater's" risotto. Remarkably creamy and flavourful (even with butter greatly reduced) and requiring only as much effort and attention as a pot of steamed rice.

  • Basil, parsley, & walnut pesto

    • Zosia on November 18, 2020

      A delicious alternative to pesto with pine nuts. It was quite thick and perhaps a little dry but I didn't mind that. I used some of it right away for pasta and thinned it with pasta cooking water and stored the remainder in the fridge to be thinned as required for other recipes.

  • Cauliflower with olives & cherry tomatoes

    • Zosia on August 29, 2015

      Really delicious way to serve cauliflower. I served the olives on the side so all family would eat the dish and it was very good without them, but better with.

  • Bolognese sauce

    • GiselleMarie on May 25, 2017

      Fabulous! I've been making this for several years and it is one of my family's favorites. I don't often allow the sauce to simmer as long as Lidia's recipe states, but it's still delicious!

  • Baked fish with savory breadcrumbs

    • mpo on January 17, 2021

      I added artichoke hearts and some yellow onion to the dish. Very tasty but I agree with the other note that the garlic needs some more handling, or maybe even extract from the pan before serving. You are basically eating raw pieces of garlic.

    • AllieTaylor on November 29, 2020

      Super delicious! Two small amendments: 1. 2-3 cloves of garlic into marinade; remainder of garlic sliced OR chopped finely with breadcrumbs 2. If using a whole fish fillet, bake approx 20-25 minutes Absolutely wonderful! Even fish-haters like this.

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  • ISBN 10 0307267512
  • ISBN 13 9780307267511
  • Linked ISBNs
  • Published Dec 11 2009
  • Format Hardcover
  • Page Count 432
  • Language English
  • Countries United States
  • Publisher Alfred A. Knopf
  • Imprint Alfred A. Knopf

Publishers Text

In this warmly written, lushly illustrated new cookbook, Lidia delves into the regional cooking of many lesser known parts of Italy - Molise, Liguria, Umbria, Abruzzo, Calabria, Valle d'Aosta, Le Marche, Trentino Alto Adige, Basilicata, and Sardinia - and explores hidden treasures in the well-known gastronomic domains of Lombardy and Emilia Romagna.

From the north, she brings us a wealth of rice recipes, including Risotto Milan-Style with Marrow and Saffron; from sheep country, a Braised Leg of Lamb plus Lamb Chops with Olives; from farmlands, Rabbit with Onions and Stuffed Quail in Parchment; from coastal waters, a Roast Lobster with Bread Crumb Topping, and Zuppa di Pesce. And in every region she discovers new ways with pasta.

Above all, no matter where she is, Lidia reaches the local people who make great olive oils, or harvest tiny lentils, or produce artisan cheeses and regional wines. The authentic and delectable recipes she brings home to us are born out of these intimate connections and, as always, out of her passion for the delightfully varied foods of her native Italy. In addition, her daughter, Tanya, takes us on side trips to share her love of the country and its art.



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