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  • Introduction

    The moment I learned how to say “ciao,” I embarked on a lifelong love affair with Italy and its unforgettable foods and wines. I am not Italian by birth, but I am Italian at heart. Utterly passionate about Italy and all things Italian, I continue to explore every corner of this enchanting land and soak up the knowledge of generations of cooks and food lovers. I didn’t have an Italian grandmother of my own to cook with, but in my travels I have been adopted by many grandmothers and aunts who graciously taught me their secrets and showed me dishes that inspire love and passion.

    Being an outsider has advantages: I can approach the foods and wines of Italy from a unique perspective and explain them to others along with the cultural context necessary for better understanding. Outsiders notice things natives take for granted.

    As an outsider, I am enchanted by every new dish and every fresh ingredient; every variation of a recipe makes me want to know the reasons for it. I study the history and meaning of Italian foods so I can better explain them. I look beyond the familiar and find new things to be excited about around every corner.

    In my explorations of the delicious, I have been drawn to lesser known regions—parts of Italy that have been overlooked in the past by cookbook writers, chefs, and travelers. I love the thrill of traveling to areas few have visited, villages that quietly and proudly carry on traditions few are aware of. I love telling the inspiring stories of these places and people, stories full of passion, dedication, and love of tradition.

Copyright © 2013 Viktorija Todorovska All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without express written permission from the publisher.

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