Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Skinny Italian

This review is long over due, but just in case I thought I would throw my review out into the blogosphere. Now, I know some are big fans of the Real Housewives of New Jersey. Some are not fans of it at all and would love for the whole reality RHW franchise to disappear. Just hear me out because there is a few positive things that have come out of the RHW franchise and this cook book is it. Like it or not Teressa, from the Real Housewives of New Jersey cast, can cook and keep it lower in fat and in low in empty carbohydrates to boot.

To me this book is a great guide for anyone new to Italian cooking and canning for that matter. She really goes into how to save money, be eco friendly, healthy and keeps it approachable at the same time. This is not a simple feet in the cook book world. I have seen many celebrities and professional chefs alike try to create a book like this and fail. Pick it up give it a read cover to cover. You may have to just float over some of her more "colorful references" if you are sensitive in that respect, but well worth the purchase and time spent reading it. Last summer I literally cooked my way from the first page to the last.

The book is organized into twelve sections:
1. Salute! -
Basically explains who Teresa is and how her family came to the US, how she became to be a good cook, food knowledge and her views on food and diet trends, etc, etc.

2. The Cornerstone of Italian Cuisine(Things Not Found at the Olive Garden) -
self explanatory;)

3. Blessed Virgin: Olive Oil -
this is actually a really good section to read and understand how to properly use Olive Oil and why Canola oil is just down right awful and should never be in your kitchen ever!

4. Italian Seasoning: What's What and Who's Who-
This one is really great too. Simple ideas and great ideas on how to use basil all year long. This section will help you really make your meals home runs.

5. Fresco E Naturale -
This section has my favorite super simple recipe in the whole book. This will be on your table everyday all summer long. Great recipe and will turn any anti zucchini fan into a lover for sure!!!

6. And God Said, "Let There Be Pasta" and There Was: And it was Good -
She really explains how to eat pasta and portion size which is helpful for typical Americans.

7. The Secrets In the Sauce -
Love this section. I grew up with a Italian family in Houston so I learned the secrets of making perfect Italian Sauce and Pesto from the real deal, but not everyone is lucky enough to have that opportunity. Teresa does an excellent job at making Sauce and Pesto from scratch approachable.

8. Pizza! Pizza! -
Now since I am a Celiac this section is more for toppings recipes then the dough recipes, but I did get some ideas on how to make better Gluten Free pizza dough from this chapter.

9. Scratching It Up In the Kitchen -
This is the canning section. Again she does a great job at making and canning your own tomatoes and sauce easy and approachable.

10. The Art of Eating -
This is your entertaining section with recipes for large dishes, cocktails and deserts.

11. Italian Dressing and Delicious Shoes -
This is just Teresa being Teresa with some great lighter fair recipes that she uses when she wants to slim down for a big event in a hurry.

12. Love-Love-Love -
These are her sexy recipes:) Teresa is big into Women feeling sexy and wonderful and sexy food is for sure included on the Sexy list! These are her most loved recipes.

Nutritional Information-
This is awesome. I love that you can flip to this and see the calories, fat, carbs, protein and cholesterol of each dish. Missing the sugar amounts though:( O, well, you cannot have it all.

Is organized well. Sometimes with cookbooks the index is useless but the editor used a combo of key words, ingredients and recipe names. Sometimes you just get one or the other.

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