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Feb 19, 2014 05:04 PM

March 2014 Cookbook of the Month- Stir: Mixing it Up in the Italian Tradition by Barbara Lynch

Stir: Mixing it Up in the Italian Tradition by Barbara Lynch won the voting round handily, earning its spot as March’s Cookbook of the Month.

On March 1st delys77 will post individual threads for reporting your experiences from this book. In the meantime, you can use this announcement thread for general discussion about the book.

The voting thread that got us here:

The nomination thread is here:

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

For those that don’t have the book, join in on the fun by trying some of the online recipes available.

Orecchiette with Cauliflower, Anchovies and Pistachios

Spicy Tomato Soup

Poulet au pan

Roasted winter squash with maple syrup and sage cream

Lamb with gorgonzola fondue

Simple tomato sauce

Slow roasted beef tenderloin with thyme

Red wine sauce

Roasted fennel and green beans

Butcher shop Bolognese

Creamy vanilla bread pudding

Spiced walnuts

Fresh fig sauce

Creamy caramel sauce

Chantilly cream

Pearl onions au gratin

Pommes puree

Truffled gnocchi with peas and mushrooms

Ricotta Gnudi

Odd fellow marinara sauce

Trenette with pesto and haricots verts

Pork Chops with Caramelized Apples, Celery & Spiced Walnuts

Prune-Stuffed Gnocchi with Foie Gras Butter Sauce

Lemon aioli lobster rolls

Chicken Meatball Lasagnettes

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  1. Great job with the links and everything else as always BigSal! I actually figured this would win so I ordered this off Amazon for under $5 including the shipping... 88 cents for the actual book, 3.99 for shipping. I'm excited to participate again... it's been awhile for me!

    1. Thank you Big Sal and delys77.

      1. Thank you for facilitating BigSal, fabulous job as usual. I'll do my best to follow in your footsteps.

        2 Replies
        1. Raising a glass to you, Big Sal for a job Very Well done. Delys has his work cut out for him but he'll be fine.

          2 Replies
          1. re: Gio

            Cheers! Thank you (and the whole COTM gang) for making this such a welcoming, sharing and learning experience.

            1. re: BigSal

              You really did a great job, Big Sal. And we COTMers never make it easy.

              I'm sure Delys will do well also. Raising a glass to you both!

          2. Although I voted for the Hakka cookbook I'm very pleased to be cooking from "Stir" in March. Barbara Lynch's life story is fascinating, almost a Rags To Riches story. I live quite close to Boston but have never eaten at one of her world renowned restaurants. This multiple award winning chef came along just when it became impossible for me to go anywhere because of my condition and the wheelchair. I'm glad to be able to taste some of her famous dishes now.

            Here's a wonderful and enlightening interview Chef Lynch gave to Inc. magazine in November 2008. "How I Did It":


            11 Replies
            1. re: Gio

              Unfortunately yet another cookbook that my library doesn't have. I'll have to party along with my imagination.

              1. re: LulusMom

                Awww...come on. Big Sal listed some on-line recipes in the OP. Surely you'll find one or two that may appeal to you. At least I hope so.

                1. re: Gio

                  Weirdly, none of them especially did when I read through them this morning. Maybe my appetite will perk up when I start reading reviews. Obviously something is off with me today!

                  1. re: LulusMom

                    It will. The book is a little different than your typical Italian Cookbooks, in my opinion. I think of it more like a cookbook by someone who likes Italian food but who only decided to include some of her favorite recipes. So she might have a ragu here and an Italian dessert there, but left other recipes which might be expected to be included in any Italian book out. In place of those recipes, she tucked in some very decidedly unItalian recipes (seared duck breast with spiced cherries). The way I have come to look at it is this: if the recipe is in here, it's for a reason. So it may not sound so appealing, but once made it will probably surprise you.

                    1. re: dkennedy

                      Good info and good advice. I think maybe I'm just a little exhausted after sick husband/snow days/the nonstopness of things lately. I will say that I just spent a little time (husband, now well, is away and I let Lulu eat in front of the tv - horrible mom!) looking at Isabel's Cantina and getting *very* excited about that, so at least something is working correctly.

                      1. re: LulusMom

                        Sorry to hear about sick hubby and snow day all in one. Hope the sun peaks through and you can have some respite.

                        1. re: LulusMom

                          I swear I could have written this post. My child has been sick (ie., send him to preschool seemingly fine, then get the "come and get your sick kid" call from school) 3 times in the last month; I've been sick twice; husband has been sick only "once", but it has lasted an eternity.

                          And now we have a foot of wet, heavy snow on our doorstep. :(

                          And we all know you are not a horrible mom! Sometimes you need a break and they need to mix it up!

                          I have so many Italian books--do I really need this one? dkennedy's post is very helpful.


                        2. re: dkennedy

                          This is super helpful, dk, thank you. Actually, yours and others comments in EYB are also pretty persuasive. Whoops! I just bought a cookbook, "very good" used copy for 3.23+$4 shipping. I just hope the recipes aren't exhaustingly complicated or time consuming (the chicken meatball lasagnettes recipe sounds appealing but seems to have way too many steps

                          EYB comments:

                          Here is the listing of recipes from EYB:


                          1. re: The Dairy Queen

                            Love this "whoops! I just bought a cookbook" - I could have made that post myself. Yes, dk's post was definitely helpful and persuasive. And thanks for understanding the dinner in front of the tv thing. We made up for it by cozing up in bed and watching a movie, and then sleeping together (a special treat when dadster is away).
                            Not sure whether I should read the EYB comments or not, if you know what I mean.

                          2. re: dkennedy

                            I jumped the gun last night by making a pork chop recipe from Stir, page 249. The recipe actually has 5 separate but simple components. We only cooked the chops and the celery and parsley salad, more like a gremolata. The other 3/5 are caramelized apples, spiced walnuts, and pureed turnip. The chops start out on the stove top then are moved into the oven to finish. For the celery and parsley only 2 small stalks thinly sliced with a few leaves as well, and chopped parsley dressed with S & P & EVOO w lemon juice. Absolutely delicious! So if this one recipe is any indication I think it's going to be a really tasty month of March.

                    2. re: Gio

                      Thanks for the link, Gio; I received my book yesterday and really enjoyed reading about Barbara's life in the introduction...the article is very entertaining and does a great job "filling in the blanks".