The Food Lovers' Cookbook Collection
Classic Techniques of Italian Cooking by Giuliano Bugialli
Giuliano Bugialli might be popular but he is also one of the most important chroniclers of Italian food of the last thirty years. His books cannot be ignored even though he sometimes appears to be too commercial in his approach to writing.
This book is special because most Italian cookbooks (with the exception of Science in the Kitchen and the Art of Eating Well by Pellegrino Artusi) up to this point in the early nineteen eighties were a combination of travelogue and recipe book. They concentrated more on dinner party tricks or photographic essays of beautiful Italian locations.
Giuliano Bugialli used this tour de force to explain the techniques
required to produce authentic Italian dishes.
A long explanation of each dish is provided, breaking with the tradition of the times (and certainly the practice of the present). He also took the use of 'technique photographs' to a new height with sequences of black and white photographs accompanying each recipe.
Some of the recipes were ground-breaking for the time - detailed explanations for preparing live pheasant and techniques for preparing mascarpone cheese - an ingredient only just becoming known in England, the United States and Australia at the time.
It is difficult to remember life without risotto. At the time the book was published, however, risotto was a dish that was little known outside Northern Italy. Bugialli's detailed descriptions of how to produce a risotto were ground-breaking.
Over five hundred pages are used to describe and illuminate Italian classic recipes. This is a book well-worth adding to your food library.