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This week A Taste of the Past recreates a classic master cookbook of the Italian vintage "The Silver Spoon" with the help of the editor Emilia Terragni of Phaidon Press. Emilia expounds on the challenges that face a culinary historian in translating a 60 year old cookbook from Italian into English; from recipes where much was assumed and thus lacking direction, to differences in stoves, measurements and more. This episode is sponsored by Hearst Ranch.


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This week on The Main Course, host Patrick Martins welcomes Chef Josh Laurano to the program. Having completed his first three months as Executive Chef at Lupa in New York City (starting there years ago as a line cook), Josh checks in with Patrick and shares his notable past experiences at Batali & Bastianich restaurants such as: Del Posto, Babbo, and Terry Market in Port Chester. The two also discuss Josh's personal background and how it inspired him to gravitate to the kitchen, starting with the woman known as the knish queen of West Virginia: Josh's mom. She owned and operated a local organic bakery while his dad had a vegetarian restaurant in New Jersey. Josh also addresses the grass-fed beef movement with his thoughts and even offers some tips when cooking with the leaner cuts of meat. Navigating Josh's impressive career with the B&B Hospitality Group, Patrick gets the details of the inner workings of these successful kitchens. This program was brought to you by Rolling Press.

"I try and eat, when I can, the meats that you guys stand behind; locally, organically, delicious meat. Fundamentally, as a chef and a consumer it really comes down to the taste of the product." [5:44]

"You have a couple of options as a young cook starting out. You can work and then party and not do anything in between, or can work and read and you can figure out, "alright I overcooked this, why did I do it."... So, maybe that helped propel me faster." [9:13]

"You can't just say I cook food and I'm a chef. We are responsible for the entire dining experience." [13:46]

--Josh Laurano on The Main Course


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How does one begin to encapsulate the varied cuisine of Italy? On this episode of A Taste of the Past, Linda Pelaccio is joined by Associate Professor at the New School, Fabio Parasecoli. Recently, Fabio released Al Dente, a book about the history of food in Italy. Learn how a desire for modernization suppressed the interest in Italian heirloom ingredients. Find out how economic conditions shaped Italian cuisine today. Why is Italian food so regionally diverse, and how do Italians express their local pride through food? How did Italians incorporate agricultural products from other areas into their culinary identity? Find out on this week's episode of A Taste of the Past! Thanks to our sponsor, The International Culinary Center. Music by Idgy Dean.

"There was this idea of being 'modern' rather than 'Italian', and that allowed for the spread of products throughout the country, and many of them were industrialized food products." [9:30]

-- Fabio Parasecoli on A Taste of the Past


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