Tasting Rome:Fresh Flavor & Forgotten Recipes From An Ancient City by Katie Parla and Kristina Gill is a new niche cook book in the growing genre of the hybrid travel- cooking book. One might wonder why in this modern day anyone would purchase an expensive cook book when there are so many free recipes available on the internet. There are still some people out there who prefer a physical cookbook that they can shelve in their kitchen rather than a collection of printed out recipes. This book is a beautifully bound hardcover with full color photos of exotic looking meals. It is a work of art- which it needs to be- in order to compete with the convenience of online recipes. This book would make a great gift for a chef or as a housewarming gift. Anyone who wants to explore their Italian heritage and foods will enjoy this cookbook as well. As far as recipes- this book is for the advanced chef who feels at home trying new meals and new variations of authentic Italian cooking. This book isn't about plain old pasta and pizza. This book is for daring individuals who dare to prepare the exotic sounding foods like verdue gratinate al forno or pizzette- which is a pastry puff pizza or hraimi con couscous which is spicy fish with couscous. There are also some unpleasant recipes such as fegatelli di maiale which is grilled pig's liver and animelle con marsala- which is sweetbreads with marsala wine. Sweetbread is the thymus gland of veal and lamb. Having taken anatomy and as a nursing student, I'd know never to eat a thymus gland even if you paid me. In fact I would not eat a grilled pig's liver or even a beef tongue. I couldn't care less if the beef tongue was smeared with Salsa Verde, a garlic-rich parsley sauce. I still wouldn't eat it even if you paid me. I guess I am not fancy enough for these recipes, but I am sure there are some fancy upscale Italians who are. There are holiday dishes as well as fancy Italian desserts included. This book is an instruction manual too in which step by step preparation instructions and techniques are provided as well as the photos of the preparation process.
In addition to recipes there is also tourist information as well as general information about the ingredients commonly used it Italian recipes. This book combines artistry and upscale ingredients with a variety of meat and ingredients. The book goes over the step by step process of the recipes even the history of the recipe as well. There is a lot of background and supplemental information to make the reader an expert in this cuisine . As a blogger I received a copy of this book published by Potter publishers for the purpose of writing this review.