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Gennaro’s Italian Year

Gennaro's Italian YearGennaro’s Italian Year – Gennaro Contaldo
Headline – 2006
Photographs by David Loftus.

I have had a love affair with Italy dating back to the very first time I went there. I haven’t seen as much of the country as I would like to have done but I have spent quite a lot of time there. It would be impossible to say whether I love the countryside, culture, history, people, language or the food most. In short – I was either going to love or hate this book.
I loved it. It has taken the usual layout of moving season by season through the year starting with Autumn (why? So many do but I do not know why) and working right around. The index is a little hard to navigate but that’s a minor niggle.
The photography and styling is wonderful – it reminds me of a Toast catalogue, lots of muted colours tempered with big splashes of terracotta and bright coloured dishes. Warming and homely – in other words, just what I love about Italy.
There is a real mixture of recipes in the book – some are quite complicated but others are beautifully simple and it makes a really good collection with lots of options for whatever you are looking to make. Above each recipe there are notes on options or alternative ingredients. The side dish ideas are some of the best – really different and I’ll be trying several of those out.
My favourite recipes were the Pappardelle al Fagiano (pasta with pheasant sauce), the Fave dei Morti (almond biscuits) and the Torta Pasquale (Easter pie). There are information pages dotted throughout the recipes with stories and anecdotes about Italy and cooking. He has also included great pages dealing with one specific ingredient or occasion (Christmas, Ricotta etc.).
This is another cook book that I picked up in my local library but would be very happy to have on my shelves and pull out every time that I had one of my frequent Italy cravings.

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1 Comment

  1. Great to read this review as this is a book I´ve been thinking about buying (no libarary where I live :( ) I think it will go on my Christmas list now!


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