Above: Classic eggplant alla parmigiana, layered with freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano and tomato at Lidia’s in Kansas City, one of Lidia Bastianich’s beloved restaurants across the U.S.
Our blog master once had the opportunity to sit down with Lidia Bastianich, one of the greatest Italian chefs of our times, and ask her what inspired her to become one of the architects of the current renaissance of Italian gastronomy in the U.S. and across the world.
“When you look at the great beauty of Italy,” she said. “It’s easy to understand why the Italians are such creative people. From the [historic] Renaissance to this day, Italians have made so many contributions to the arts and culture. It was only natural that Italian cooking would do the same.”
“I don’t know if I’ve been an architect of the Italian culinary renaissance as you put it,” she added graciously. “But when I am surrounded by this beauty and the goodness of the ingredients I find here, I know that I am inspired by them.”
It’s hard to overestimate Lidia’s contribution to the world of Italian cuisine. Between her books, her television show, and her wonderful cooking, she’s become a model and a guiding light for a generation of home and professional chefs, cooks, and food lovers.
We couldn’t be more proud that Sansonina Evaluva is being poured by the glass at her namesake restaurant in Kansas City.
Image via the Lidia’s Kansas City Facebook.