Last year, I started my Italian-Canadian reading list. A writer by trade, and an avid-reader, I focused on books about history, community and creativity in Italian-Canadian life. But my bookshelf has grown considerably with Italian cookbooks over the past year as I’ve been recording my family’s recipes and trying a few more. There’s nothing I get a kick out of more than seeing an old, old recipe from my family in an Italian cookbook in some variation.
Since my desk has a scattering of cookbooks, and I get a lot of requests for recipes, this time around I’m writing an Italian-Canadian reading list for cookbooks. I’ve included the “bibles,” books that those looking to learn about Italian cooking need to have, and also books that focus on Italian desserts, as those are much more rare than regular cookbooks.
The Silver Spoon, published by Phaidon. First published in 1950, Il cucchiaio d’argento (the silver spoon) has become the most successful cookbook in Italy. Experts were commissioned to collect hundreds of traditional recipes from throughout the country, including every regional speciality. They now offer a series of books including The Silver Spoon for Children.
La Cucina Italiana Encyclopedia of Italian Cooking by The Editors of La Cucina Italiana
Cook Italy: More Than 400 Authentic Recipes and Techniques from Every Region of Italy by Katie Caldesi and Giancarlo Caldesi
Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking by Marcella Hazan
Cooking with Italian Grandmothers: Recipes and Stories from Tuscany to Sicily, by Jessica Theroux
By popular chefs:
Lidia’s Favorite Recipes: 100 Foolproof Italian Dishes, from Basic Sauces to Irresistible Entrees by Lidia Matticchio
Jamie’s Italy by Jamie Oliver
Molto Gusto: Easy Italian Cooking by Mario Batali
Sweet Maria’s Italian Cookie Tray: A Cookbook by Maria Bruscino Sanchez
Solo Dolci: The Italian Dessert Cookbook by Anna Bruni Benson
Great Italian Desserts by Nicholas Malgieri
Cookbooks by Italian-Canadians:
La Dolce Vita Cookbook by David Rocco
Je Cuisine Italien by Stefano Faita
Grace’s Sweet Life: Homemade Italian Desserts from Cannoli, Tiramisu, and Panna Cotta to Torte, Pizzelle, and Struffoli by Grace Massa-Langlois