Children's LiteratureLocricchio begins with an introduction to the geography of Italy. Each region of Italy has produced several recipes that are unique to that region. He then provides information about safety in the kitchen and basic definitions of cooking terms that are used throughout the text. Several chapters catalogue Italian cuisine containing recipes that will appear familiar to children, but are also easy enough for children to make themselves with adult supervision. Special instructions concerning how to cook pasta and how to prepare pizza dough that are included in the chapter "Pasta, Pizza, and Polenta" will be beneficial to cooks of any age. Each recipe includes a brief introduction to the dish as well as the Italian name for the dish. Illustrations appear throughout, showing the finished product or certain steps that may be difficult to follow without illustrations. A section concerning kitchen equipment and utensils and essential ingredients in Italian cooking follow the last chapter. Also included are an index and a metric conversion chart. 2003, Benchmark Books,
School Library JournalGr 5-8-Eye-catching covers tempt novice as well as experienced cooks in these titles. "Before You Begin" discusses general safety rules in the kitchen as well as specific rules for using knives. Regions of Italy and Mexico are defined along with a description of how geography influences crops, celebrations, and traditions that flourish within each area. Cooking terms are explained; meticulous black-and-white illustrations of "Helpful Kitchen Equipment and Utensils" appear throughout; and "Essential Ingredients" in the Italian or Mexican kitchen (alphabetically arranged from anchovies to vinegar, or allspice to tortillas) are included. Sharp, colorful photographs, many full-page, complement the texts beautifully. The 19 recipes in Italy include soups, salads, pasta, sauce, pizza, polenta, chicken, pork, vegetables, cake, and fruit. Soups, salsas, snacks, vegetables, rice, beans, meat, desserts, and more are featured in Mexico. Along with the "Easy Menu Ethnic Cookbooks" series (Lerner) and "A World of Recipes" series (Heinemann Library), Locricchio's books will be popular additions to most collections.-Augusta R. Malvagno, Queens Borough Public Library, NY Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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