Lidia Matticchio Bastianich

Lidia Matticchio Bastianich is a traditionalist from the old country. I just love her cooking style and stories. Simple, fresh ingredients put together in a way that makes food taste great. Which is exactly what this site is all about. Hi, I’m Kira Volpi and if you’ve spent any amount of time on this site you’ll know that I am all about simple and fresh. Just like most great Italian chefs and that includes Lidia.

My first from her collection of Italian cookbooks was Recipes from Lidia's Italian-American Table. A paperback that was published in 2000 and was her second cookbook to what has become a collection of ten fabulous books.

It's where I got my homemade pasta recipe and so many more incredible cooking ideas.

She is now an established Italian chef that is known in the US, Australian and Japan. Lidia's collection of Italian Cook books include:

  1. Lidia Cooks from the Heart of Italy. This is a collection of 175 Regional recipes.
  2. Lidia's Italy. 140 Easy Italian Recipes from her top 10 places in Italy.
  3. Lidia's Italian-American Kitchen
  4. Lidia's Family Table. A collection of improvisational recipes and ideas
  5. Lidia's Italian Table. 200 recipes of from the Queen of Italian cooking.
  6. Nonna tell me a story. An endearing Christmas Cook book.
  7. La Cucina Di Lidia. First Volume published in 1990.
  8. La Cucina Di Lidia. Volume Two published in 2003.
Lidia Matticchio Bastianich is originally from Istria (Now part of Croatia) but her and her family fled to Trieste, Italy during World War two. This lady has known her share of hard times.

She moved to the United States in her teens and became the head of the kitchen while her Mother worked at a local bakery and Father at the Chevrolet factory. Lidia was no stranger to hard work herself as she grew up to become a world renowned restauranteur and Italian chef.

Lidia found her passion for food at an early age remembering times with her Grandparents and realizing their traditions for Italian food. Both owned a trattoria and all the ingredients they used were either home grown or purchased fresh from local markets. Much like it's still done to this day in Italy.

At the young age of 24 Lidia Matticchio Bastianich met her husband. They opened their own restaurant, Buonavia (On The Good Road). Only a few years later with a baby son and daughter they opened their second Queens New York restaurant, Villa Secondo (Second House). Both these establishments were later sold to fund the creation of the famous Felidia (Felix and Lidia) in Manhattan, New York in 1981.

Being in the center of the restaurant world she was soon recognized by celebrity chefs such as Julia Childs who adored her cooking style. She insisted on putting her on her show which lead to the Public Broadcasting System (PBS) offering Lidia her own show in 1998.

A Star Was Born

Lidia now has her own production company Tavola after appearing in her first show Lidia's Italian-American Kitchen, then later Lidia's Family Table and Lidia's Italy. She always ends every show with her famous line.

Tutti a tavola a mangiare!"
"Everyone to the table to eat"

What can I say? Lidia Matticchio Bastianich is one of my heros! But there are plenty more great Italian Cookbooks right here on this site.

Vivere, Amare, Ridere e Mangiare Bene
Live, Love, Laugh and Eat Well!
Kira Volpi

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