So I came into this cookbook with much less cynicism than, say, this one or this one, and I have to admit, I was quite impressed with the thoughtfulness with which the recipes were put together and also the desire Tucci has to share his family history in order to prove his credibility. It's as if he's saying, "Hey people, all those other celebs? They're just cashing in. Me? I actually have a legit, storied history here." And, well, let me just say that I love Stanly Tucci so that's part of the reason I give him a pass. He's always seemed above the fray when it comes to all the privilege and antics of the Hollywood crowd. Whether that's only my own perception or the actual truth, I don't know, but to me, he's much more of a salt-of-the-earth kind of guy.
The recipes in this book are quite simple and easily attainable for a home cook, though not particularly new or innovative. But hey, there's nothing wrong with simple, easy and traditional, right?
Unlike my most recent cookbook review, the photographs in this cookbook definitely engaged my salivary glands. In fact, the photographs were so appetizing that I found myself wishing there were more.
I've made a few recipes from this cookbook since checking it out at the library and I have to say they were all successful, but my favorites were the Milanese Risotto and the Egg Tart with Spinach and Potatoes (posted below).
Egg Tart with Spinach and Potatoes
- 1 large Yukon Gold potato, peeled (I left the peel on because I'm lazy like that)
- 8 large eggs
- 1/2 pound fresh spinach, stems removed, leaves washed, coarsely chopped, and blanched in boiling water for 1 minute (I was lazy and used frozen spinach)
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoons chopped, fresh Italian parsley
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
2. Place the potato in a pot filled with cold salted water. Bring to a boil and cook until just tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Cut the potato in half lengthwise and then into thin half-moon slices.
3. In a medium-size bowl, whisk eggs until frothy. Squeeze all the water out of the spinach and add to the eggs along with the potato slices, salt and pepper to taste, and parsley. Stir to incorporate all ingredients.
Wine pairing: Sparkling, light white, and medium white
The Tucci Cookbook by Stanley Tucci
Published: October 9, 2012
Publisher: Gallery Books
Disclosure: Library Copy