The B&N Podcast: Lidia Bastianich

Every author has a story beyond the one that they put down on paper. The Barnes & Noble Podcast goes between the lines with today’s most interesting writers, exploring what inspires them, what confounds them, and what they were thinking when they wrote the books we’re talking about.

On this episode we welcome chef, restaurateur and television star Lidia Bastianich, the author of more than a dozen bestselling cookbooks which have introduced a generation to the flavors, ingredients and methods of traditional Italian regional cuisines. She joins Jim Mustich to talk about her new memoir My American Dream, which shares the story of her family’s journey to America, through displacement and struggle, perseverance and ultimately a career that has — deliciously — helped shape how we eat.


From the best-selling cookbook author, beloved and award-winning television personality, and hugely successful restaurateur–a heartwarming, emotional, revelatory memoir told with all her hallmark warmth and gusto.

Lidia’s story begins with her upbringing in Pula, a formerly Italian city turned Yugoslavian under Tito’s communist regime. She enjoys a childhood surrounded by love and security–despite the family’s poverty–learning everything about Italian cooking from her beloved grandmother, Nonna Rosa. When the communist regime begins investigating the family, they flee to Trieste, Italy, where they spend two years in a refugee camp waiting for visas to enter the United States–an experience that will shape Lidia for the rest of her life. At age 12, Lidia starts a new life in New York. She soon begins working in restaurants as a young teenager, the first step toward the creation of her own American dream. And she tells in great, vivid detail the fulfillment of that dream: her close-knit family, her dedication and endless passion for food that ultimately leads to multiple restaurants, many cookbooks, and twenty years on public television as the host of her own cooking show. An absolute must-have for the millions of Lidia fans.

Explore more books by Lidia Bastianich.

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