Science in the Kitchen and the Art of Eating Well (Lorenzo Da Ponte Italian Library)
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First published in 1891, Pellegrino Artusi's La scienza in cucina e l'arte di mangier bene has come to be recognized as the most significant Italian cookbook of modern times. It was reprinted thirteen times and had sold more than 52,000 copies in the years before Artusi's death in 1910, with the number of recipes growing from 475 to 790. And while this figure has not changed, the book has consistently remained in print.
Although Artusi was himself of the upper classes and it was doubtful he had ever touched a kitchen utensil or lit a fire under a pot, he wrote the book not for professional chefs, as was the nineteenth-century custom, but for middle-class family cooks: housewives and their domestic helpers. His tone is that of a friendly advisor - humorous and nonchalant. He indulges in witty anecdotes about many of the recipes, describing his experiences and the historical relevance of particular dishes.
Artusi's masterpiece is not merely a popular cookbook; it is a landmark work in Italian culture. This English edition (first published by Marsilio Publishers in 1997) features a delightful introduction by Luigi Ballerini that traces the fascinating history of the book and explains its importance in the context of Italian history and politics. The illustrations are by the noted Italian artist Giuliano Della Casa.
FINOCCHI (FENNEL MOLD) Because of the pleasant aroma and sweet taste of fennel, this sformato is one of the most delicate tasting. Remove the toughest leaves from the fennel bulbs, then cut the bulbs into small sections, and boil until 2/3 done in salted water. Strain well, and then sauté in a little butter, seasoning with salt. When the fennel has absorbed the butter, moisten with a little milk. When it has absorbed the milk as well, add a little bechamel sauce. Remove from the fire and
does not come out dry. Season with olive oil, pepper and, if you like, a few sprigs of rosemary. 510. BACCALÀ FRITTO (FRIED SALT COD) The frying pan is an implement used for many lovely things in the kitchen; but, in my opinion, salt cod comes to a most deplorable end in it. This is because, since it has to be boiled first and then coated with batter, there is no seasoning that can give it a proper flavor. And yet some people, perhaps not knowing a better recipe, make the concoction
frozen, add the other ingredients. Blanch the pistachios and the almonds in hot water. Divide the pistachios in three parts. Chop the almonds into pieces the size of vetch seeds and then then toast them. Cut the citron into slivers and the pumpkin into largish cubes, which give a nice color to the ice cream. Boil the milk for half an hour with the sugar. If the milk is of good quality you can make the ice cream without the egg yolks, but it will not be as flavorful. In this case and in
(Artichoke Cutlets) 188. Zucchini fritti I (Fried Zucchini I) 189. Zucchini fritti II (Fried Zucchini II) 190. Ciambelline (Little Rings) 191. Donzelline (Little Damsels) 192. Fritto di chifels (Fried Kipfels) 193. Amaretti fritti (Fried Macaroons) 194. Crescente (Half Moons) 195. Crescioni (Spinach Fritters) 196. Crocchette (Croquettes) 197. Crocchette d’animelle (Sweetbread Croquettes) 198. Crocchette di riso semplici (Basic Rice Croquettes) 199. Crocchette
from, unscathed. Sitting atop this double patrimony of classical Italian gastronomy and its regional diversity – which for centuries had been the exclusive domain of technicians, and the singular privilege of the upper classes who employed them – and faced with the task of redeeming it from French dominance and disseminating it among bourgeois readers whose economic values and ethical expectations he fully shared, Artusi may seem more like a pop orchestra conductor than an avant-garde musician.