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So I'm almost ashamed to admit this picture showcases just a section of my cookbook library - and just a section of the Italian cookbooks at that. There are so many Italian cookbooks out there it can be almost impossible to know where to start, so a lot of people just reach for titles by the big name TV celebrity chefs like Giada, Lidia, Mario et al. Truthfully I don't think many of them are nearly as good as some of the lesser-known Italian cookbooks out there.

Based on my years in the kitchen, I've put together a list of my top 10 favorite Italian cookbooks. These are all books I've used recipes from repeatedly and found delicious and not too difficult to prepare at home. Are any of these books on your shelf? What are your favorite Italian cookbooks?
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Basics of preparing home-style Japanese food in your own kitchen. Tools, ingredients and essential cookbooks along with an easy-to-prepare classic recipe.

Read more: "Japanese Country Cooking: An Overview."
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These must-try recipes are sure to warm you up and satisfy your hunger. Salads aren't just for the summertime, as there are many great recipes to try utilizing the winter harvest and healthy pantry staples.

Read more: "Healthy Greens and Satisfying Grains: 5 Fabulous Winter Salads"
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This fish soup makes for a great cold-weather meal. It's good-for-you as well using lighter ingredients and a classic fish chowder while still tasting delicious.

Read more: "Winter Warmer Sunny Fish Chowder: A Light and Healthy Recipe"
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This website promises to revolutionize the way we use our cookbooks by making it easier to find the recipes we want. How well does it actually deliver on its claims?

Read more: ""Eat Your Books" - A Unique Search Engine for Cookbooks and Recipes"
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A simple and tasty appetizer that's great for your holiday or party table. Vegetables and spices are added to the mixed cheese for a richer flavor.

Full article: Holiday Cheeseball Recipe by Nicole Pellegrini
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Summer is the time to enjoy wonderful, fresh stone fruit such as peaches. For a great party drink, try this recipe for peach sangria featuring sweet wine and citrus fruit.



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This is a simple yet delicious recipe for an Italian-style salsa, perfect to make with fresh summer tomatoes and basil.



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Enjoy the best summer produce with this homemade pizza recipe featuring fresh tomatoes and arugula.



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For a bright summer lunch for one, or a great side salad for two, try this simple recipe using arugula, pine nuts, black olives and red onions.



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Whether planning a summer party or a cool evening at home, this simple drink featuring fresh basil is a surefire winner.

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Nicole ("sockii") Pellegrini

January 2013

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