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September 2006 Cookbook of the Month: Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking

Use this thread for general discussion on our September 2006 Cookbook of the Month, Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking by Marcella Hazan. You can chat about which recipes to choose, how you think the whole cookbook process is going, or any general comments about the book.

To post a review of any recipe, please select the appropriate thread below:
For appetizers and soups:
http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...
For pasta and other starches:
http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...
For seafood and meat:
http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...
For vegetables and salads:
http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...
For dessert and breads:
http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/...

The Chowhound Team asked me to remind you that verbatim copying of recipes to the boards is violation of the copyright of the originalauthor. Posts with copied recipes will be removed.

Happy cooking! I look forward to the discussion!

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  1. Not very Italian to split the pasta and soup!

    Three dishes we've made a zillion times are the arugula and potato soup, the rice with mozzarella and basil (arborio recommendation is actually bad, you want a rice that boils well), and the chicken stuffed with two lemons.

    Also the pasta with tuna sauce and stracotto al barolo, but after 25 years what I make bears no relation to the book.

    1. In 5 minutes of googling, I have found a few recipes online for those of us without the books, and I'm sure more are out there.

      Here is a site with several recipes grouped by season. Some of them are from Essentials, some from other cookbooks (scroll to the very bottom of the recipe to see cookbook info)

      http://www.dolcevita.com/cuisine/reci...

      1 Reply
      1. Okay let's get cooking! I have a few recipes in mind--Just have to invite a couple of people over. Of course, that will turn into a dinner, but what the h.

        1. Can I make a suggestion? Could people start making comments about one dish per reply, rather than listing everything you've made at once? Then other people who have made that dish can add to that thread.

          1. I have to say, my favorite part of the Classic book (don't know if/where this exists in Essentials), is at the beginning of the Desserts chapter. Marcella chastises the reader for even considering making a dessert, they're not typical of Italian meals, that the grand desserts one may associate with Italian meals are exclusive to special events. The ordinary family might have a piece of fruit, or a hard cookie with vin santo (I think that's it, I'm not much of a drinker, really). In the end, she grudgingly allows as how she will provide the reader with a few recipes

            It's this moment in the book where her personality comes through so clearly (and, obviously, it's a personality I like). A cookbook's author almost always reveals their personality through the book; I suppose it's simply a matter of whether one likes the author. I love the Marcella personality that I read in Classic and More Classics.