MENGHI, Umberto

Author Tags: Cookbook

Umberto Menghi, an internationally-known restauranteur and cook, is the author of The Umberto Menghi Cookbook (Talonbooks 1982) called the "top recipe book of the year," and Umberto's Pasta Book (Talonbooks 1985), a guide to cooking every pasta from agnolotti to ziti. Menghi has been praised in every food and travel magazine in North America, including Gourmet and Bon Appetit. He has had his own syndicated television cooking show, The Elegant Appetite. Umberto's Kitchen is a collection of 150 favourite recipes and displays the influences of British Columbia, Tuscany and northern California. Toscana Mia (D&M 2003) has dishes cooked by Umberto's mother and grandmother, and encourages readers to develop a feel for quantities. His other cookbooks are The Umberto Menghi Seafood Cookbook (1987) and The Flavours of Tuscany (D&M).

[BCBW 2003] "Cookbook"

The Umberto Menghi Seafood Cookbook

For seafood with an Italian flair, The Umberto Menghi Seafood Cookbook (David Robinson/Key Porter $14.95) features such recipes as shrimp canapes, tuna with avocado and mustard sauce, pan-fried fillet of sole with pine nuts and warm lobster salad with apple and papaya. Packaged by the producer of Susan Mendelson's hugely successful first cookbook and The Umberto Menghi Cookbook (50,000 sold), this marriage between distinctly B.C. cuisine and Italian flamboyance is sure to increase the broadening reputation of Menghi, owner of five restaurants in Vancouver, one at Whistler Mountain, B.C. and one in San Francisco. [Spring 1988]

Toscana Mia

To roast a suckling pig, three things are essential: a brick oven, 35 guests and an accordion player. If you’re so blessed—-or cursed—-Toscana Mia (D&M $50) provides a recipe for porchetta al forno, along with dozens more for the traditional Tuscan dishes of Umberto Menghi’s childhood.

The errant son, Menghi left Italy in the ‘60s, made his fortune in the restaurant business, and then found himself nostalgic for the simpler pleasures of his homeland. He bought a 54-acre farm, with the help of family and investors, and turned it into a country inn and cooking school, named Villa Delia, after his mother.

Essays on Tuscany’s geography, its cowboys and farmers, the autumn hunting season and mushrooms, olive oil and wine are interspersed with directions for sautéed fennel, salt cod, tripe, true Florentine cannelloni and almond biscotti. 1-55054-721-6 [Louise Donnelly / BCBW 2001]