Ask a foodie about the Amalfi Coast and lemons immediately spring to mind. The sweet, aromatic, large and thick-skinned Sfusato Amalfitano is the extraordinary and delectable citrus fruit which Gennaro Contaldo grew up with.
Lemons were and still are a part of daily life for locals of the Amalfi Coast, and, when Gennaro came to the UK over 40 years ago he continued this tradition. From a sliver of zest in his morning espresso to helping with minor ailments and even household chores, lemons have a wealth of uses.
No part of the lemon is wasted – flesh, pith and skin are chopped into salads, juice is drizzled over meat, fish and veggies, while the aromatic zest adds a complexity to a dish's flavour. Even the leaves are used to wrap meat, fish and cheese for extra flavour, or finely chopped and made into a tea infusion.
Lemons can cleanse, refresh, preserve, ‘cook’ and add a vibrant flavour to dishes as giving colour and an uplifting aroma. From Ravioli with Ricotta, Lemon and Mint, and Sicilian Chicken Involtini, to Lemon Biscuits, and Coffee and Lemon Semi-freddo, this is not only a beautiful and inspiring homage to the most revered of fruit but Gennaro's most inspirational book to date.
Chapters are: Introduction – including The Amalfi Lemon and Lemons in the Kitchen; Small Plates; Vegetables; Fish; Meat; Desserts; Drinks & Preserves; Sauces & Dressings.
Gennaro Contaldo’s warmth, Italian spirit and sense of fun have led him to be one of the UK’s most-loved chefs. He is renowned for being a mentor to Jamie Oliver and teaching him, with Carluccio, everything Jamie knows about Italian cooking. In 1999, he opened Passione in London, which was awarded Best Italian restaurant in 2005. He is a favourite on Saturday Kitchen, has his own YouTube food channel, and is an ambassador for Citalia, Parmigiano Reggiano and Birra Moretti. This is his seventh book with Pavilion, which include Pasta Perfecto and Fast Cook Italian. He lives in east London with his wife and twin daughters. @gennarocontaldo