A Regional Italian Cookbook for the Obsessed Home Cook

Cook your way through every region of Italy with Katie Caldesi's cookbook, 'The Italian Cooking Course'

Oven-Baked Sardines with Fennel and Citrus Fruits

"This is a book for people who come home from a holiday in Italy, or just from a great meal at an Italian restaurant, wishing they knew how to make that seafood pasta or the focaccia that they enjoyed so much," writes Katie Caldesi in the introduction to The Italian Cooking Course (Kyle Books, $30). A promising way to start a cookbook, indeed.

With 500 recipes backed by a wealth of experience — Caldesi owns the only Italian cooking school in central London, La Cucina Caldesi, and helps run two Italian restaurants in England with her Tuscan husband, Giancarlo — adventurous home cooks will certainly not be disappointed. Caldesi brings her broad travel experience in Italy to bear on the selection of recipes, which touches on the 20 different regions of Italy, each with distinctive dishes of their own and also alternative takes on more popular ones. To get a taste of what lies in store, see the recipes below.

Parmesan and Parsley Fritters

Here's a classic antipasto recipe from Abruzzo, a region in central Italy bordering the eastern coast. (Photo courtesy of Lisa Linder)

Marinated Salted Anchovies

This simple preparation highlights the natural flavor of good-quality anchovies, with a marinade consisting of onion, garlic, chile, lemon juice, extra-virgin olive oil, and parsley. (Photo courtesy of Lisa Linder)

Oven-Baked Sardines with Fennel and Citrus Fruits

If you've been thinking about giving sardines another chance (or a first chance), this is the recipe to try. (Photo courtesy of Lisa Linder)


Will Budiaman is the Recipe editor at The Daily Meal. Follow him on Twitter @WillBudiaman.