Books We Love: Red Sauce

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Author Ian Macallen’s fascinating book Red Sauce takes readers on a mouthwatering tour through Sicily, Tuscany, and Milan where authentic Italian cuisine was perfected, made its way to America, and then evolved into the popular dishes enjoyed by millions today. Macallen notes that the beginnings of Italian cuisine can be traced to ancient Rome—both the food itself and the spirit of eating. Immigrants who traveled to the United States introduced delicious recipes to the country, featuring sauces made with spices and ingredients that attracted the most discerning palates.  Over time, those recipes were modified to include more Western components.  

Red Sauce covers the broad range of cooking from Roman times to the present and the individual histories of foods such as spaghetti, lasagna, and pizza.  Macallen’s book includes early Italian tomato sauce recipes, early American tomato sauce recipes, meatballs, eggplant parmigiana, and many others. Spanning centuries of Italian cookery, Red Sauce is a great reference for cooks seeking to understand the difference between traditional and contemporary (or Americanized) cuisine.

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