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Sauces & Shapes : Pasta the Italian Way
by Oretta Zanini De Vita and Maureen B. Fant


Overview -

Pasta is so universally popular in the United States that it can justifiably be called an American food. This book makes the case for keeping it Italian with recipes for sauces and soups as cooked in Italian homes today. There are authentic versions of such favorites as carbonara, bolognese, marinara, and Alfredo, as well as plenty of unusual but no less traditional sauces, based on roasts, ribs, rabbit, clams, eggplant, arugula, and mushrooms, to name but a few.  Read more...


 
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More About Sauces & Shapes by Oretta Zanini De Vita; Maureen B. Fant
 
 
 
Overview

Pasta is so universally popular in the United States that it can justifiably be called an American food. This book makes the case for keeping it Italian with recipes for sauces and soups as cooked in Italian homes today. There are authentic versions of such favorites as carbonara, bolognese, marinara, and Alfredo, as well as plenty of unusual but no less traditional sauces, based on roasts, ribs, rabbit, clams, eggplant, arugula, and mushrooms, to name but a few.

Anyone who cooks or eats pasta needs this book. The straightforward recipes are easy enough for the inexperienced, but even professional chefs will grasp the elegance of their simplicity.

Cooking pasta the Italian way means:

  • Keep your eye on the pot, not the clock.
  • Respect tradition, but don't be a slave to it.
  • Choose a compatible pasta shape for your sauce or soup, but remember they aren't matched by computer. (And that angel hair goes with broth, not sauce.)
  • Use the best ingredients you can find--and you can find plenty on the Internet.
  • Resist the urge to embellish, add, or substitute. But minor variations usually enhance a dish.
  • How much salt? Don't ask, taste

Serving and eating pasta the Italian way means:

  • Use a spoon for soup, not for twirling spaghetti.
  • Learn to twirl; never cut.
  • Never add too much cheese, and often add none at all.
  • Toss the cheese and pasta before adding the sauce.
  • Warm the dishes.Serve pasta alone. The salad comes after.
  • To be perfectly proper, use a plate, not a bowl.

The authors are reluctant to compromise because they know how good well-made pasta can be. But they keep their sense of humor and are sympathetic to all well-intentioned readers.


 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780393082432
  • ISBN-10: 0393082431
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
  • Publish Date: October 2013
  • Page Count: 400
  • Dimensions: 10.31 x 8.33 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.65 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Cooking > Specific Ingredients - Pasta
Books > Cooking > Regional & Ethnic - Italian

 
BookPage Reviews

A venerable vegetarian

Mollie Katzen is not only the High Priestess of plant-based cuisine, she’s also an early pioneer, proud proponent, practitioner and author of a dozen cookbooks that provide appealing alternatives to traditional meat and potatoes, including her trailblazing, mind-changing Moosewood Cookbook (1977). Her latest, The Heart of the Plate: Vegetarian Recipes for a New Generation, is a latter-day Moosewood, livelier and lighter, sharper and spicier, showcasing her expanded repertoire and simplified approach. In addition to the usual course categories, there’s a brilliant array of “burgers,” like crunchy Mushroom-Barley-Cashew Burgers, and savory “cozy mashes”—think beets, celery root, peas and more—that can stand alone or ornament other creations. Try custardy Mushroom Popover Pie for a weekday dinner, or Curried Cauliflower Stew with crisp Onion Pakoras for a party. Every recipe is introduced with Mollie’s infectious enthusiasm and followed by “Optional Enhancements” that offer intriguing improv options.

PASTA—THE REAL DEAL
There’s never been a shortage of cookbooks claiming to unlock the secrets of real Italian cooking. Most don’t, and anyone who’s savored a plate of pasta in Italy knows that what we make here, in restaurants and at home, just doesn’t taste as good. With the publication of Sauces & Shapes: Pasta the Italian Way that sad state of affairs has been remedied. Oretta Zanini De Vita, a renowned Italian food historian and pasta authority, and Maureen B. Fant, an American who’s lived and cooked in Rome for more than 30 years, have teamed up to give us 150 recipes written by and for Italians but adapted for American expectations (more measurements, more detailed instructions). There’s a glorious selection of sauces and soups with suggestions for the pasta shapes—some familiar, some not—that go best with them, recipes for making pasta from scratch and, most importantly, advice on approaching pasta as Italians approach this most-loved food that is “synonymous with family, hearth and home.”

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