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Favorite Cookbooks of 2010

December 23, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

This past year I’ve gotten more obsessed with Italian cooking, and I’m mean really obsessed. I always loved Italian food before, but you know it’s bad when you start sourcing things like bottarga (compressed and salted mullet roe–sounds gross, I know) and instead of ordering out for pizza, you make everything, including the dough, by hand (it’s not that much work and the results are soooo worth it).

I love the A14 Cookbook and My Calabria. This is cooking from southern Italy. It’s rustic, frugal, and earthy. Nothing gets wasted. It’s cooking with soul, cooking with heritage, cooking the way it’s supposed to be, where you can still taste the dirt the food came from.

For a simple supper after I’ve overindulged at this time of year, here’s what I do:

Sautee three minced garlic cloves in olive oil for thirty seconds. Add one 28 oz. can of whole tomatoes and their juices plus 1/2 cup white wine. Add a few pinches of salt, two or three teaspoons of dried oregano, and pepper. Tear in a fistful of basil leaves. When the tomatoes soften, pierce them gently and then smash them with a potato masher or fork. Cook until the sauce thickens, about 20-30 minutes. Drizzle with really good olive oil. Serve over sphaghetti with parmesan grated over. Take your time, have a glass of wine while everything simmers. It will be perfect. You will never buy spaghetti sauce again. Ever.

Cheers and Merry Christmas!

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