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Pasta: The Guide to the Most Loved Italian Food by ItaliaSquisita

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by ItaliaSquisita
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This two-volume set features more than 100 pasta recipes from many of Italy’s leading chefs, presented by one of the country's leading food magazines.

The Fresh Pasta volume includes notes on the history of pasta, a map highlighting pastas associated with each of Italy’s regions, and photos of 32 of the most common fresh pasta shapes. More than fifty pages of instruction on making and shaping fresh pastas with and without egg, and using a variety of flours, include detailed step-by-step photo sequences. Gnocchi are also included in this section.

The Dry Pasta volume assumes you will be using commercially produced dry pasta, as most Italians do. After a slightly poetic meditation on the development of dry pasta and how it has come to symbolize the national identity while fresh pastas are objects of regional pride, this volume offers some thirty pages of instructions on cooking the pasta itself. Some methods involve finishing a slightly undercooked pasta in its sauce; another suggests infusing uncooked dry pasta in liquid overnight in a vacuum bag. There are also techniques of pressure cooking and even deep frying.

The recipes which constitute the bulk of each volume do include some familiar comfort dishes such as spaghetti with toasted bread crumbs to fettuccine alfredo. More noteworthy to us are the recipes developed by the leading chefs. For instance, burnt wheat orichette with chard and ricotta salata or a seafood version of amatriciana made with tuna belly. There’s even a version of arrabiata sauce which derives its kick from fresh herbs rather than peppers.

Among the chefs contributing to these volumes are:

  • Carmela Abbate of Zi Teresa in Naples
  • Heinz Beck of La Pergola in Rome
  • Massimo Bottura of Osteria Francescana in Modena
  • Alfonso Iaccarino of Don Alfonso 1890 in Massa Lubrense
  • Norbert Niederklofer of St. Hubertus in San Cassiano
  • Tatiana Porciani of Erbaluigi in Pisa

Each volume is a paperback, with full color photography throughout. In English. There is a nominal slipcase which will keep the two books together on the shelf; it is made of paper rather than the customary cardboard. In English.

You may also be interested in Original & Gourmet, a similar book from the same publisher, dedicated to Italian cooking in general.

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