By Todd Barron @ FoodieCuisine.com
I subscribe to over a dozen food magazines and one of my favorite ones is La Cucina Italiana. La Cucina Italiana reminds me of the recently discontinued Gourmet magazine in that it has various articles not only about the cuisine of Italy but also about the country itself. Their coverage of the “how” and “why” is much more appealing to me than typical mass market cooking magazines. The staff that publishes La Cucina Italiana really seems to care about Italy and the people of the country. Their passion speaks volumes to me about their credibility and makes them deserving of support in my opinion.
An example of this not-just-food coverage can be found in their latest April 2010 issue. One of their first articles titled “noblesse oblige” goes into detail about the region of Montepulciano. In the article, the author Anthony Giglio writes about the wine made in the region. He goes into detail about the wine, the people who make it, how it’s governed, and other aspects of the entire process.
Another example of their article depth is found in the same April 2010 issue in their article titled “abbachhio alla romana.” In the article the magazine goes into some detail on the origins of lamb and the classic Roman dish the article is named by. According to the article, the lamb used in the authentic recipe must come from the Lazio region and be butchered there. They also stipulate that the lamb can weigh no more than 8 kilograms. The article continues on to discuss the origins of the recipe name along with a recipe to follow so you can cook it at home. You can’t get Lazio lamb easily in the United States though, which is why they link you to www.localharvest.org to find a supplier of milk-fed lamb for the recipe.
I have prepared many recipes found in the magazine and they have all turned out tasty. At the very least the technique and blend or flavors has worked especially well. I have had to add a few more spices or layer more flavor into the dishes to meet my personal tastes but the recipes themselves are a good inspiration. I highly recommend you subscribe to this magazine or pick up a copy at your local store if you are interested in more than “just” the recipes from Italy. This magazine offers something special you won’t find very often in the world of mass publications.