by Sybil PrattOctober, 2005
You may remember Wanda and Giovanna Tornabene, the masterful mother and daughter team whose two previous cookbooks opened up their Sicilian kitchen, with all its earthy exuberance and special succulence, to Americans and earned two James Beard Awards along the way. 100 Ways to Be Pasta: Perfect Pasta Recipes from Gangivecchio, their latest, is a paean to pasta, the very heart and soul of Sicilian and Italian cuisine. Pasta, says Giovanna, is "what we reach for to comfort ourselves and our loved ones in the happiest of times and in the saddest. The food we identify ourselves with as Italians." But, we know for sure that you don't have to be Italian to love pasta, and that, with the guidance of cooks like Wanda and Giovanna, you don't even have be Italian to cook like one and revel in the pleasures pasta provides. Open to any page, pick a recipe, and you'll be in pasta paradise Rigatoni with Swordfish RagÂ; Bavette (you can use linguini) with Pistachio Pesto and Shrimp; Ziti with Lamb, Lemon and Rosemary; Quick Tagliatelle with Fried Zucchini and Parsley. And if preparing pasta is not part of your genetic code, it will seem as if it is once you've absorbed all the little "tricks" the Tornabenes sprinkle through these pages. Buon Appetito!