Lidia’s “A Pot, a Pan, and a Bowl”: Simple Recipes for Perfect Meals

Knopf. Oct. 2021. 224p. ISBN 9780525657408. $29.95. COOKING
In this cookbook’s dedication, TV chef Bastianich (host of the program Lidia’s Kitchen; author of the cookbooks Celebrate Like an Italian and Mastering the Art of Italian Cuisine) writes, “I nurture, give, share, and express love through cooking, preparing, and ultimately sharing food.” That’s what this collection is about—love in the form of food that can be made in one pot, one pan, or one bowl. A good bowl of soup can be a warm hug for the soul, Bastianich claims, and she features several recipes that fit this description. Other chapters include eggs (beyond scrambled), meat, fish, salads, and desserts. Some of the recipes are classics (including two versions of minestrone), while others are new idea (shaved artichoke, spinach, and mortadella salad). These all sound like they could make a restaurant’s worth of dishes, but the introduction sets home cooks on a simple path to flavorful meals. There are bright, enticing color photographs throughout.
VERDICT Readers who are familiar with homestyle Italian cooking will be reminded of its simple joys, while those looking to make something attainable in their kitchen will enjoy the simplicity offered here. Note that this is the companion cookbook for the forthcoming TV series Lidia’s Kitchen: Home Cooking.
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