My Calabria

I bought this cookbook in December of 2010 written by Rosetta Constantino and have used it often ever since. My husband’s father comes from Calabria, so we were familiar with many recipes in the book and this cookbook highlights some of Calabria’s best recipes. This book is packed with so much information about Calabria and it’s cuisine it is really much more than a mere cookbook, and you cannot help but be drawn to the region, it’s people, and it’s cuisine after reading the book. Even if you have no particular interest in Calabria, the southern Italian recipes in this book are delicious and will soon make you crave a visit to Calabria yourself. Once again, every recipe I have tried from this book has met with rave reviews from my family, and I even broke tradition this past Christmas by making my Mostaccioli con Mandorle (page 326) and Pitta’mpigiata (page 338) from this book instead of using the recipes given to me from family. Both turned out wonderful and I’ll certainly make them again.

Every chapter has an introduction explaining the specialties of Calabria, and it is very apparent that Ms. Constantino did her homework in preparing to write this book. I was particularly interested in reading that women in Calabria rarely add eggs to their fresh pasta, as my Mother-In-Law often spoke of making a simple flour and water pasta that is very typical of cucina povera cooking. There is a certain simplicity to Calabrian cooking which is why it is so popular worldwide, and the choice of recipes in this cookbook was obviously done with care. You could go through this cookbook preparing one recipe every day and by the time you are finished with the book, you would have a very good understanding of Calabrian cuisine.

I loved this cookbook so much in fact that I bought it for all four of my sister-in-laws for Christmas, and I thoroughly recommend this book to anyone with a Calabresi heritage, or even an passing interest in Calabria. This is the type of cookbook you will find yourself pulling off the shelf often, and it is very difficult to read through the book and not be inspired to head to the kitchen.

Review From The Atantic - At the tip of Italy’s “boot” lies Calabria. It is a beautiful, mountainous region populated by fishermen and small farmers. Rosetta Costantino grew up in this rugged landscape—her father a shepherd and wine maker and her mother his tireless assistant. When her family immigrated to California, they re-created a little Calabria on their property, cooking with eggplant, tomatoes, and peppers from their garden, fresh ricotta made from scratch, and pasta fashioned by hand. A frugal people, Calabrians are master preservers, transforming fresh figs into jam, canning fresh tuna in oil, and sun-drying peppers for the winter. Now Rosetta shares her family’s story and introduces readers to the fiery simplicity of Calabrian food. The first cookbook of a little-known region of Italy, My Calabria celebrates the richness of the region’s landscape and the allure of its cuisine. This is a cookbook for our time: a reminder of how ingenious and resourceful cooks can create a gorgeous local cuisine. 100 color photographs.

If you are interested in buying My Calabria, written by Rosetta Constantino, you can find it at Amazon.com by clicking the book below.


My Calabria: Rustic Family Cooking from Italy’s Undiscovered South

 
Deborah Mele
November 2011
 

 

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