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Just when we thought we knew everything there was to know about Tuscany, along comes Beth Elon–cookbook writer and 30 year resident of a small village at the foot of the Appenines–who takes us along the back roads and through the ancient hill towns to remote restaurants that are for the most part overlooked by tourists and known only to the locals. At each restaurant the cooks share their highly personal recipes for regional dishes made with local ingredients.
With this guide in hand, you'll not only know where to dine, but what to order when you get there. Each regional section begins with illuminating and absorbing explanations of what makes Tuscan cooking so unique: location, location, location. You'll read about a bean so beloved by a village that it's been elevated to cult status–but that is totally unheard of a few kilometers down the road; the specialty of the Zeri Valley, a milk-fed aboriginal baby lamb, that is almost unknown elsewhere in Italy; the endless array of vegetable tarts found only in Lunigiana and Garfagnana.
Elon has organized ten itineraries that also include stops at gourmet shops, food festivals, greenmarkets, and private kitchens. Along the way, she points out significant architecture, historic sites, churches, art, museums, and points of interest in the memorable landscape. The indispensable travel information in this guide is enriched by the author's deep personal knowledge of the history and legend of the region–and her delightful voice and beautiful writing.
"Readers of Beth Elon's new book, A CULINARY TRAVELLER IN TUSCANY: EXPLORING & EATING OFF THE BEATEN TRACK (Little Bookroom; $24.95), may be tempted to drop everything and book themselves on the next flight to Florence. They needn't bring much more than this exhaustive guide and a healthy appetite. For more than thirty years, Elon, an American cookbook author, has lived with her Israeli husband in a 17th-century farmhouse in the Apennine foothills, where she makes her own olive oil and wine. It's hard to imagine a more knowledgeable or enthusiastic escort through this land of la cucina povera (the poor kitchen), an expression that belies the cuisine's richness. Elon examines Tuscany's myriad regions, each comprising a cluster of tiny towns with their own distinct foods, festivals and traditions. She provides itineraries for ten of these regions, each of which opens with maps and details about the area's history, legends and sights (museums, castles, churches and markets). Then Elon gets to the good part, writing lovingly about local fare, the best restaurants in which to sample it and simple, delicious recipes to try at home." --Town & Country
“By stepping away from the traditional tourist destinations, travelers can get in touch with a place's authentic flavor. Elon, the author of several cookbooks, helps the reader do just that in her tour of the off-the-beaten-path areas of Tuscany, where she has lived off and on since the 1970s. Like a close friend trying to guide you to the best and most interesting places in town, Elon makes sure to point out historical, artistic, cultural, and gastronomical places of interest. Her culinary background leads her to place particular attention on regional and seasonal foods and restaurants and stores usually overlooked by tourists. From the restaurants visited in the ten itineraries, Elon shares recipes that have translated well into her own kitchen. These numerous dishes, whose ingredients have not been Americanized, provide an authentic taste of Tuscany indeed. An ideal companion for any traveler looking to taste his or her way through the back roads of Tuscany; recommended for travel and culinary collections.” —Library Journal
"A cross between Baedeker and the Silver Spoon, Beth Elon's Culinary Traveller in Tuscany mixes history, restaurant reviews, and recipes."--Travel + Leisure, T+L's Essential Summer-Reading List
"Beth Elon not only tastes Tuscany, she savors every flavor, turns down every enticing road, and joyously reveals her long, profound and continuing appreciation of this place of endless pleasures. -- Frances Mayes, author of Under the Tuscan Sun
"What Beth Elon has given us is not only a detailed and practical cookbook but also a traveler's guide -- and a love letter to a place and a way of living. This is great food writing in the spirit of Elizabeth David." -- Joan Didion
"Off-the-beaten-path areas of Tuscany to explore cuisine include stops at gourmet shops, food festivals, green markets and private kitchens." --The Fort Wayne Journal Gazette
American BETH ELON and her husband, the Israeli social historian Amos Elon, have lived in Tuscany for more than 30 years. Her previous books include The Pasta Book and The Big Book of Pasta, which was a bestseller in Israel, and A Mediterranean Farm Kitchen. She continues to write food columns for Israeli papers from her home in Italy.
Buy A Culinary Traveller in Tuscany by Beth Elon from our Christian Books store - isbn: 9781892145369 & 1892145367
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