Breathtakingly delicious, dish after dish stunningly quick, with only three or four basic ingredients and easy techniques Every Night Italian is an absolute treasure for busy cooks.
Giuliano Hazan is a second-generation chef and an outstanding teacher and writer with an intense love of fine food and wine from both his famous mother, Marcella Hazan, and his wine expert father, Victor. From this rich heritage Giuliano has intensified the best of the best.
He has surpassed even his mother's great talent for creating wonderful taste with few ingredients. His Shrimp Broiled with Rosemary (Gamberoni al Forno) contains basic ingredients olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and rosemary and a quick technique for deveining shrimp without peeling them. Literally in minutes you have prepared a magnificent dish from a famous Italian restaurant.
Giuliano has been executive chef in fine restaurants and is a master of classic techniques, but he is an even greater master of simplifying preparations. He has the kind of expertise that comes only from years of experience.
Marcella tells of sending Giuliano to summer camp when he was about seven years old. The supervisor explained that each camper would have a job, so they should be ready by the end of the week to select an activity that they liked and would like to help with. This might be putting up the canoes or setting up the archery targets. Giuliano did not wait until the end of the week. The second day he went to the supervisor and told him, "I have selected my job. You have to let me cook. I can't eat this food!" And cook he did, for the whole camp.
The writing itself is charming. You will immediately fall in love with Giuliano's straightforward honesty and intense love of good food. I know that Every Night Italian will be a much-treasured, grease-spattered mainstay of kitchens around the country.
Shirley O. Corriher
Encouraged by the popularity of his first cookbook, The Classic Pasta Cookbook, my son, Giuliano, announced that he would start work on another. "Have you got a particular approach in mind yet?" I asked him. "I do," he said. "Whenever I chat with the people who have come to one of my cooking classes, and I ask them what they cook every day at home, they say they don't have time to cook every day. When they entertain or on long weekends, but never every day. Don't you find that peculiar, Mother? All over Italy, at each mealtime, families come home to freshly cooked food. Women have jobs and careers, just as they do in America, yet they, and many men, too, manage to prepare a tasty meal every day. I'd like to show Americans how it can be done."
Admittedly, Italian lives play out to a different rhythm than American ones. Most of that country shuts down for a few hours at midday so that people can leave their work to have their main meal at home. Rare is the neighborhood that doesn't have either market stalls or excellent food shops, and one doesn't have far to go for fresh, local ingredients and basic staples. It's unrealistic to try to graft Italian life onto American roots. But some of the values that bring richness and stability to Italian families can do the same for a family in this country, whether dinner is at noontime, as it is in Italy and as it was once in America's South, or in the evening, as it is throughout America today. Those values are engendered and reaffirmed at the moment when the family, be it large or small, can come to the table expecting to share and enjoy good food.
How to find the time? Giuliano shows you how you can put a delicious, heartwarming dinner on the table in less than an hour, as so many Italians do. No one, I think, is better qualified than he to interpret the genuine, life-enhancing flavor of Italian food so that a hurried and harried American cook can confidently and regularly reproduce it. One doesn't choose to transmit a culinary tradition from one culture to another simply because one wants to, but because one can. Although American-born, Giuliano was raised not just in an Italian home but in an Italian kitchen. He lived some of his most formative years in Italy, a country to which he returns each year. At the same time, with his California-born wife, he is bringing up his own young American family in a very American place, a medium-size town on the west coast of Florida. He knows what you need to know because for him it's not theory, it's practice. It's the food that he puts on his family table every day.
Now that my husband and I have transplanted ourselves from Italy to the States, and I too have become an American housewife, I intend to profit from Giuliano's experiences. There are so many dishes in this marvelous book that I shall be making for my husband: the Soup with Mushrooms and Potatoes, the Fusilli with Cauliflower and Olives, the Fish with Juniper, and the Braised Beef are among them. I have had the Orange Tart at Giuliano's house and if mine turns out half as well as his, it is likely to become our favorite dessert.
Every Night Italian is a glorious promise, and I congratulate Giuliano on his daring to make it. It is not just a way of cooking but also through cooking a way of living. It is a way that has brought and continues to bring happiness to millions. When you buy Giuliano's book, it will assuredly make him happy. But when you use it and act upon its premise, it should make you happy. I hope it shall.