Mario Batali Holiday Food: Family Recipes for the Most Festive Time of the Year

Mario Batali Holiday Food: Family Recipes for the Most Festive Time of the Year

by Mario Batali
     
 

Never is the generosity and spirit of the Italian table more evident than at the holidays, when great food and good times are on the menu in every household. In his new book, Mario Batali captures all the flavors of this festive season with enticing recipes that showcase the brilliance of simple Italian food at its best.

Four complete menus offer abundant meals for

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Overview

Never is the generosity and spirit of the Italian table more evident than at the holidays, when great food and good times are on the menu in every household. In his new book, Mario Batali captures all the flavors of this festive season with enticing recipes that showcase the brilliance of simple Italian food at its best.

Four complete menus offer abundant meals for the holidays, starting with the seafood extravaganza known as the Feast of Seven Fishes, traditionally served on Christmas Eve. Mario's rendition includes almost a dozen delectable fish and seafood dishes, from delicate sea bass ravioli to the indispensable baccalà, here served in the Vesuvian style. A magnificent boned and rolled turkey breast stuffed with roasted chestnuts is the centerpiece of a lavish Christmas Day's menu, while an assortment of alluring finger foods and a showstopping ziti-and-meatball-filled pasta dome set the tone for a lively New Year's Eve celebration. For the relaxed entertaining of New Year's Day, Mario suggests a procession of marinated salads, pastas, and stuffed vegetables, all served at room temperature, capped off with fresh homemade sausage with sweet peppers.

One of the great pleasures of cooking at this time of the year is baking, and Mario Batali Holiday Food includes recipes for a dozen irresistible holiday cookies, some authentically Italian and others family favorites Mario has relished since childhood. You'll also find a host of delectable tortes, custards, cakes, and confections as well as wine suggestions and a refreshing aperitivo to round out each holiday menu.

Whether you're creating a full-blown Italian spread or simply adding a touch of Italy to your own family traditions, Mario Batali Holiday Food will make your holiday gatherings memorably delicious.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Americans tend to think of Italian cooking as easy: we have come to rely on 15-minute pastas and hearty, seasonal dishes like minestrone. But here, Batali of Food Network's Molto Mario presents the most cherished Italian dishes--those served, often after days of preparation and with fanfare, during the holidays. Batali focuses on the seafood-rich Amalfi coast, beginning with a Christmas Eve menu that includes Vongole Origanate (clams oreganato), Baccal Vesuviana, Ravioli alla Spigola (Sea Bass Ravioli with Marjoram and Potatoes), and in case you still have any room for dessert, Classic Cannoli. The book consists of traditional Italian menus that take you through the four holidays--Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year's Eve and New Year's Day--but the recipes can be used for an impressive meal or snack any time. (There is also a separate section on the wines of Campania.) Cooking from scratch is the name of the game, so don't expect shortcuts; however, instructions are generally to the point and the results are well worthwhile. Recipes like Mythic Pasta Dome (a sort of pasta torte) capture the elaborate and festive nature of holiday Italian cooking. Beginners might be intimidated: Baba (lemon cake) requires a yeast rising and the insertion of fine holes in the cake into which a lemon mixture is "infused." But once practiced, recipes become easy, and there are some simple yet gratifying recipes, such as No-Bake Chocolate Cookies. If you want to enliven your Italian repertoire with authentic, celebratory dishes, this book is invaluable. Photographs by Quentin Bacon. (Oct.) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.|
Library Journal - Library Journal
In his latest cookbook, Batali (Simple Italian Food), popular host of the Food Network's Molto Mario and executive chef of four New York City restaurants, offers four Italian holiday menus, from a Christmas Eve "Feast of the Fishes" to a New Year's Day day-long open house. This is the companion volume to a new television series, Mario Batali's Italy, and many of the recipes are inspired by the simple, rustic dishes of the region of Campania, particularly the Amalfi Coast from Naples to Salerno. There are color photographs of the region and of most of the recipes, many of them full-page close-ups. This is a small book, but Batali has numerous fans. Recommended for most collections. Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780609607749
Publisher:
Crown Publishing Group
Publication date:
10/28/2000
Edition description:
First Edition
Pages:
144
Product dimensions:
7.80(w) x 8.60(h) x 0.55(d)

Meet the Author

MARIO BATALI's world now encompasses three New York City restaurants -- Babbo, Lupa, and Esca -- as well as a wine store, The Italian Wine Merchant. He is the host of Food Network's popular Molto Mario, as well as an upcoming new series, Mario Batali's Italy, and is the author of Mario Batali Simple Italian Food (Clarkson Potter, 1998). He lives in New York City with his wife and two sons.

Read an Excerpt

LINGUINE ALLE NOCI (LINGUINE WITH WALNUT SAUCE)

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/2 cup toasted hard bread crumbs
1 cup roughly chopped walnuts
1 tablespoon hot red pepper flakes
1 pound linguine
1/2 cup roughly chopped Italian parsley
1/2 cup freshly grated caciocavallo cheese or pecorino romano

Bring 6 quarts of water to a boil and add 2 tablespoons kosher salt.

In a 14- to 16-inch fry pan, heat the oil over medium heat till smoking. Add the garlic and cook until light golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Add half of the bread crumbs, the walnuts, and pepper flakes and cook until lightly toasted, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Drop the pasta into the boiling water and cook according to the package instructions until 1 minute short of al dente. Just before draining the pasta, add 1/4 cup of the pasta cooking water to the pan with the walnut mixture.

Drain the pasta in a colander and pour the pasta into the pan with the walnut mixture. Place the pan over medium heat and continue cooking the pasta with the walnut mixture until the pasta is lightly dressed with the condiment, about 1 minute. Add the parsley and grated cheese, stir through, pour into a heated bowl, sprinkle with the remaining bread crumbs, and serve immediately.

Yield: Serves 4 to 8

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BROCCOLI SOFFRITI (BRAISED BROCCOLI)

3 pounds fresh broccoli rabe, with leaves, if possible, or 3 pounds broccoli
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
8 garlic cloves, halved
10 marinated anchovy fillets, roughly chopped, or 5 salt-packed anchovies, soaked, rinsed and filleted Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup toasted bread crumbs

Trim the broccoli rabe into long stalks, removing the bottom 2 inches and leaving the leaves attached. Bring 6 quarts of water to a boil. Meanwhile, place a 12- to 14-inch sauté pan over medium-low heat and add the olive oil. Add the garlic and anchovies and cook 5 minutes, stirring often, until just golden brown and very fragrant. While the garlic and anchovies cook, plunge the broccoli rabe into the boiling water and cook for 1 minute. Drain the broccoli rabe well and add it to the pan with the garlic and anchovies. Cook over low heat for 10 to 12 minutes, until tender but still holding its shape. Remove from heat and season aggressively with pepper and timidly with salt. Serve hot or at room temperature sprinkled with the bread crumbs.

Yield: Serves 8

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COTECCHINO CON LENTICCHIE (BIG SAUSAGE WITH LENTILS)

1 tablespoon kosher salt
8 ounces brown lentils
1 medium carrot, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch dice
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
12 fresh sage leaves
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 cup red wine vinegar Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cotecchino sausages, about 2 pounds each

Bring 6 cups of water to a boil and add the salt. Add the lentils, carrots, garlic, and sage and boil until the lentils are tender yet firm, about 25 minutes. Drain and place in a mixing bowl. Add the oil and vinegar, season with salt and pepper, and mix well. Set aside.

Prick the sausages with a pin several times. Place in a large pot of cold water and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat to a very low boil and cover the pot. Cook for 1 1/2 hours.

Place the marinated lentils on a large serving platter to form a bed for the cotecchino. Drain the sausages and cut into 1/4-inch rounds. Arrange the sausage on the lentils and serve hot or at room temperature.

Yield: Serves 8

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