The Chianti Family Cookbook: Classic Recipes from the Heart of Tuscany

Throughout the world, the Ruffino name is synonymous with the fine wines of Italy’s Chianti region. To the natives of Chianti, however, the Ruffino name also means fine food–in particular, the fine food of Giovanna Folonari Ruffino, whose Tuscan kitchen has become a magnet for culinary students.
As her friends and family will attest, Signora Ruffino is a charming hostess; as this book proves, she is also an accomplished cook. Now, with the help of Michele Evans, co-author of the James Beard Award—-winning Gangivecchio’s Sicilian Kitchen, she has collected a hundred of her favorite recipes so that the rest of us can enjoy the simple but delicious cuisine that has made her dinner parties and family meals so memorable.
Each easy-to-follow recipe consists of simple instructions and is accompanied by a beautifully reproduced color
photograph that enables the home cook to see exactly what the finished dish looks like. The result is a visual feast that will stimulate the eye and please the palate.In Chianti Family Cooking, cooking instructor and member of the famous Ruffino Chianti family Giovanna Folonari Ruffino offers 100 lusty, simple, and intensely flavored dishes for the lover of Italian foods and Italian wines. Almost devoid of commentary, nearly every recipe is, instead, accompanied by a photograph. (Those dishes lacking pictures, such as Spaghetti with Onion Sauce, tend to be remarkably plain and presumably not all that photogenic.) Ruffino’s first courses range from the familiar (Penne with Spinach and Gorgonzola, Orecchiette with Broccoli) to the extraordinary (Pennette with Arugula and Sausage, Crepes with Spinach and Ricotta served with Red Sweet Pepper Fondue). Her meat dishes shine: Veal Rolls stuffed with Radicchio, Prosciutto, and Fontina is yummy beyond compare. Each section is accompanied by a recommended wine list. Surprisingly, Ruffino shows little bias toward Tuscan wines–the wines of Northern Italy, from Collio to Barolo, are represented here, as well those of the Ruffino estate. Despite (or possibly because of) its inconsistencies and surprises, Chianti Family Cooking offers the kind of direct and forceful food that will delight even the most jaded of palates. –David Kalil

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