On June 27th, eGullet is thrilled to host Lidia Bastianich, who will be answering questions that day. Lidia is widely regarded as the First Lady of Italian cuisine and restaurants in the United States and was the winner of the 2002 Outstanding Chef Award, James Beard Foundation. She is the star of Public Television's Lidia's Italian American Kitchen and Lidia's Italian Table and author of two companion cookbooks of the same name as well as La Cucina di Lidia. In addition to her television shows, Lidia was also one of the five top television chefs to be featured on a Julia Child hosted millennium cooking special, An American Feast, which aired in December 2000.
Born in Pola, Istria, she came to New York in 1958, opened her first restaurant in 1972 and is now co-owner of Felidia, Becco and Esca in New York City and Lidia's in Kansas City and Pittsburgh. In addition, Lidia is the author of the monthly column "Lidia's Italian Table" distributed by Universal Press Syndicate. Her sauces, "Lidia's Flavors of Italy" can be found in stores nationwide as well as an exclusive line of sauces with Williams-Sonoma (stores only, not online). Together with her daughter, Tanya, she runs specialized food, wine and cultural tours to Italy.
Visit Lidia's website, http://www.lidiasitaly.com for more information on this Renaissance woman. We are very glad that Lidia has decided to participate in this eGullet Q&A. Due to her time constraints, Lidia has indicated that she will only answer 25 questions. So, please get your question in early! Lidia will also pick a winner to receive a copy of one of her books.
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