There were lots of Italian cookbooks last year and there will, no doubt, be lots more this year. I've never kept count, but their popularity and number grows and grows. It's a pleasure to be able to begin this anno Italiano with Giuliano Hazan's How to Cook Italian, a book and a cook with the finest pedigree. Giuliano is the son of Marcella Hazan, the legendary introducer of real Italian cuisine to America and, with two successful previous cookbooks and a fabulous cooking school in Verona, he's proven that he's heir to her mastery of la cucina Italiana and her ability to teach it. This new book is about how Giuliano cooks at home in Florida, how he shops (at his local supermarket) and how he makes kitchen prep super-efficient. An opening chapter shows you how to equip an Italian kitchen; what's needed in an Italian pantry, fridge and freezer; and the ins and outs of basic Italian cooking techniques all good info even if you're a seasoned cook. Now you're ready to cook a classic Pasta e Fagioli, Fusilli with Zucchini Pesto, Milanese Veal Chops, Green Beans with Parmigiana, a knock-your-socks-off Tiramisu and more. All good, all Italian, all doable in your own kitchen.

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