Steeped in history, the area comprising Tuscany, Umbria and the Marche is famous for its ancient cities, stunning art and architecture and, above all, its world-famous cuisine. From the vineyard-studded hills and lofty mountains to the glorious coastlines and verdant rolling plains, the land produces a wealth of top-quality local produce, including fabulous fish and shellfish, top-quality meat and game and a profusion of fresh vegetables and herbs as well as innumerable wines, indispensable olive oil and the much-prized truffle. These are lovingly transformed into rustic, traditional and local dishes that appeal to the local people's sense of la dolce vita, an innate knowledge of how to drink and eat well.Opening with a fascinating introduction to the rich culinary history, culture and traditions of each of the cuisines, Valentina Harris describes how centuries of trade and innovation have influenced both the regions? ingredients and cooking methods. She also takes an in-depth look at some of the key festivals and celebrations and the dishes that accompany them, including sfrappe, the hot, sweet fritters served at carnivals, and pizza di Pasqua al formaggio, a rich, cheese-flavoured Easter bread. There then follows a directory of the key ingredients, from wild foods like boar, rabbit, mushrooms, truffles and asparagus to locally produced specialities like olives and olive oil, wine, breads, hams and cheeses. Step-by-step recipes for everyday foods like bread, tomato sauce and bechamel sauce are also included, providing a comprehensive guide to the core ingredients.The recipe collection features 65 authentic regional dishes, ranging from soups and antipasti, pasta, gnocchi, rice and polenta and fish and shellfish to poultry, meat and game, vegetable and eggs and desserts. All the classics are covered, including ribollita, vincisgrassi, panzanella and carnival fritters, giving a tantalising insight into this glorious cuisine.Packed with over 300 specially commissioned, inspirational pictures and delicious, easy-to-follow recipes, as well as cook's tips, variations and complete nutritional information, this is the definitive volume on a classic and universally loved regional cuisine.