HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >


Cookbook of the Month for November 2013: Marcella Hazan Month

In November, we will dedicate the month to Marcella Hazan’s collection of cookbooks including THE ESSENTIALS OF CLASSIC ITALIAN COOKING, a revision and compilation of her first two books, The Classic Italian Cook Book and More Classic Italian Cooking (and please feel free to cook from either of these if you have them), MARCELLA’S ITALIAN KITCHEN, MARCELLA CUCINA, and MARCELLA SAYS…ITALIAN COOKING WISDOM FROM THE LEGENDARY TEACHER’S MASTER CLASSES WITH 120 OF HER IRRESISTIBLE NEW RECIPES.

Because The Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking has already been a Cookbook of the Month, we will have links in the November thread for that book that will tie back to the September 2006 threads. On November 1st I will also be adding new threads for the other books, but until then you can use this announcement thread for general discussion about the books.

The voting thread that got us here:

The nomination thread:

A general explanation of Cookbook of the Month, and a list of past books:

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
    1. Thanks Sal. This is a fitting memorial to the Grand Lady of Northern Italian cuisine.

      1. I've never cooked anything from Marcella so I'm quite excited.

        2 Replies
        1. re: delys77

          Nor have I. I picked up "The Essentials..." and "The Classic..." from my library today. Looking forward to cooking with others in this manner; my first time participating in COTM.

          1. re: foodcompletesme

            Welcome Foodcompletesme, it's always great to have new people. I'm sure you will love it.

        2. This will give me the opportunity to finally try her famous tomato sauce. I have "Hazan Family Favorites" written by her son, and that recipe is included there. I'll have to read through it again because there's other classic Marcella recipes too in there I think.

          3 Replies
          1. re: juliejulez

            I've heard mention of this sauce before, and have tomatoes ready to be used. I'm not sure what recipe is being referred to. I have "The Classic Italian Cookbook" and the followup, "More Classic Italian Cooking". Where can I find this recipe? Thanks for any info.

          2. I love that you all have decided to do this for COTM. So fitting. I really hope to participate.

            1. In anticipation, I put one of the books (Essentials, I think) on hold at the library. It isn't due for a couple of weeks, but I hope to jump in once I have it.

              1. Oh good! I'm going to try to participate this month. Always love to cook Marcella's recipes. :)

                1. Yay! Question for hounds who are familiar with her books: if I were only going to purchase one, which one should it be? (I'm thinking Essentials, but if you have other recommendations, please weigh in.)

                  13 Replies
                  1. re: biondanonima

                    I own Essentials; if I were going to buy another, I'd buy this new one, nice photos:


                    I got it from the library and had to control myself not to buy it.

                    1. re: walker

                      But isn't that the wrong Hazan? I thought we were only doing Marcella's recipes this month?

                      Someone PLEASE clarify! [My fault for not paying attention in class, I think.]

                      1. re: smtucker

                        That's their son's. My vote is still for "Marcella's Italian Kitchen".

                        1. re: buttertart

                          That's the only one I have and intend to use.

                        2. re: smtucker

                          The book title has both her son's name (Guiliano) and her name listed as the authors. If you want to keep it to just HER books, ok, I was just suggesting that this is a book worth looking at; try getting it from your library.

                          1. re: walker

                            I have several of Giuliano Hazan's books too and they have been underused. I believe Marcella's name is on the book(s) because she wrote the introduction and/or foreward to a couple of his books. I'd love to get your feedback on his recipes. Perhaps you could start a "cooking from..." thread?

                        3. re: walker

                          As I mentioned above, I own Hazan Family Favorites, received it as a Christmas gift this past holiday. It's a nice book to look through and read. I've made 2 recipes from it... the meatballs and the sausage and pepper pasta. I have tons bookmarked because many look really excellent. It is not a Marcella book though, other than the inclusion of her famous tomato sauce.

                          1. re: juliejulez

                            Her excellent Roasted Chicken with 2 Lemons is in Hazan Family Favorites.

                        4. re: biondanonima

                          I have several of her books.

                          Classics, better than any of them, really teaches how to put together a whole meal. She teaches you/explains which veg to serve if you are having which protein. And which sauce pairs well, etc.

                          And it isn't a heavy handed, "Do this!"

                          That and two of my 'most favorite' dishes I learned from her are in there. (It was my Rolled Stuffed Pasta which helped me convince Mrs. Hambone to join my pigsty. The pan roasted chicken with rosemary, garlic and white wine is something really special.)

                          1. re: hambone

                            What I love about her is that she IS "heavy handed." As in "Do this." :) And I don't argue with her. Deliberately using present tense.

                            1. re: c oliver

                              I guess heavy handed is a subjective thing.

                              Momma Hambone was a huge fan of the wooden spoon (and I don't mean to stir sauce.) So Marcella seems gentle.

                            2. re: hambone

                              That's great to know Hambone, as the pan roasted chicken with rosemary is on the menu for us this week.

                              1. re: hambone

                                Yes, good to know the pan roasted chicken is recommended. I already have it bookmarked to try. And I will follow Marcella's suggestion to have Tagliatelle with Bolognese Meat Sauce as a First Course and the chicken as second course -yum.

                                Also have my eye on Panzanella/ Bread Salad which I have been trying to recreate since my trip to Italy!

                                I have enjoyed reading the Introduction to Classic, her description of ingredients, and explanations at the start of the chapters.

                                A funny/strange aside...I got my copy from the Public Library and there is a note on the library card envelope that is still in the front cover stating "Pg. 149-152 and 155-158 have been cut out by a thoughtless and selfish person". It was sad and funny at the same time and helps me realize the book was written in another era. The library dutifully replaced those pages, fortunately, although they are a different quality paper than the original so you can tell. I hope whoever that 'thoughtless and selfish person' was, they really enjoyed the Cannelloni!

                            3. Oh goody! So appropriate.

                                1. Buttertart started a Cooking From "Marcella's Italian Kitchen" thread on Mar 25, 2011 to which some of us posted reports of recipes we made along with queries and tips...


                                  1. THANK YOU, CHOWHOUNDS
                                    a really wonderful choice and I may even have a few recipes to report on this month, in particular a dynamite swordfish recipe tried this summer

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: jen kalb

                                      Also, you can feel free to report on the old threads anytime -- you don't have to wait until November...

                                    2. Maybe this will be covered on 11/1 but if a recipe was written about in '06 should it be linked to now? Or should the recent writeup actually go to the original COTM? Am I making any sense? :)

                                      5 Replies
                                      1. re: c oliver

                                        Am I understanding correctly that you're asking if current COTM reports should go in the original 9/06 threads? In past revisits, we've always added to the original threads so as not to have the info in multiple places, and BigSal says in her OP above that her Nov 1 thread will include links to the existing Essentials threads, and to new threads she'll create for the other books. Hope that helps (assuming I understood correctly!).

                                          1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                            Now let's see if *I* get it :) For example, let's say I've never made her Bolognese sauce (which I sure as heck have) and I make it. Do I go to the former thread and post? So the November thread would/should be only for those recipes that haven't been posted about previously? Not trying to be difficult, I promise.

                                            1. re: c oliver

                                              If the recipe is from Essentials, you will use the old 2006 thread (which will be a recycled thread just like we re-used the same threads for Fish Without a Doubt). If it is from one of Marcella's three other books, we will have brand new threads for those. I hope this will become more clear when I post the actual threads, but I will include links to the 2006 threads as well as new threads for the new books.

                                              1. re: BigSal

                                                Thanks. That IS clear and I kinda figured it would get spelled out later.

                                        1. I have been dying to own Essentials so I ordered it today on Amazon and plan to participate aside as possible. I guess I will be over in the 2006 thread mostly. So excited!!!

                                          1. As I post this, Dear Daughter and her main squeeze are on the road back to Texas with 75 plus cookbooks. Of which Essentials is a major influence. I hope she enjoys it as much as I have through years.

                                            She is also hauling all of my stuff. Now it is hers. And she is soooooo happy.

                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: INDIANRIVERFL

                                              That's one book that's never going to be purged. But I did buy one of our daughters her own.

                                              1. I am quite excited about the upcoming November COTM. I have ordered Essentials and there is a tonne of stuff in there that I would like to make. While many of the recent COTMs have been excellent, I have found it a bit more challenging to find things that work for me and my household. I am glad to see that this will definitely not be the case with Marcella.

                                                1. My travels have kept me away from CH for what feels like forever and I'm sad that I'll be away for most of November as I so love to cook Italian and I don't feel I know MH's work at all really.

                                                  I will be home for a handful of days and I'd really appreciate anyone's suggestions for "must make" dishes. I believe I have purchased all her books on the basis of recommendations here on CH. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

                                                  Here are the only MH recipes I've made:


                                                  Chicken breasts saltimbocca style (Saltimbocca di petti di pollo)

                                                  Impromptu mustard fruit with mascarpone (La mostarda di frutta improvisata e mascarpone)

                                                  Veal pasta sauce with four different varieties of mushrooms (Ragù di vitello con quattro varietà di funghi)

                                                  Sautéed snapper with mushrooms

                                                  Veal scaloppine with lemon

                                                  Sautéed mushrooms with olive oil, garlic, and parsley method 1

                                                  I've likely written at least one review of each of these recipes in EYB.

                                                  Thanks in advance, I miss all you COTM cooks!!

                                                  1. I'm so excited to be joining in this month, I'm getting a jumpstart tonight with Ms Hazan's classic tomato sauce recipe. I only have Essentials and have been scouring the book for a week! I hope to cook from some online sources of her other books, as well!
                                                    Happy Halloween and happy cooking everyone!

                                                    2 Replies
                                                    1. re: pagesinthesun

                                                      I'm doing very much the same Pagesinthesun, I've cooked a few Marcella recipes this week, all from Essentials. Can't wait for the month to officially get rolling.

                                                      1. re: pagesinthesun

                                                        I taught a friend how to make the roasted chicken with 2 lemons last night (I use 1 big one instead of 2 small ones because Costco only sells big ones) and I quarter it instead of just poking holes. I buy the best chicken I can and never use frozen. It's so easy and so delicious, even cold the next day it's wonderful.

                                                        Recipe is in Essentials.

                                                      2. The official November COTM thread is up. Please join us here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/922497.

                                                        1. I just wanted to report that I was "friends" with Marcella (if you get my drift) and so I was able to let Mr. Hazan know about Marcella month. he was pleased and said thank you to all us Chowhounds :)