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Dinner at Desco with cookbook author Rosetta Costantino

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On Tuesday, January 14, Chef Donato Scotti of Desco restaurant in Old Oakland will host Rosetta Costantino, -- author of MY CALABRIA: Rustic Family Cooking from Italy’s Undiscovered South, and the recently published SOUTHERN ITALIAN DESSERTS: Rediscovering the Sweet Traditions of Calabria, Campania, Basilicata, Puglia, and Sicily –preparing al la carte dinner specials from her books.

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If you’ve never been to a cook-from-the-book restaurant event, this is a great place to start. Desco has the look and feel of a 1940’s Italian caffe – big enough to bustle, but small enough to feel welcoming. Their seasonally fresh, ingredient-driven regional Italian cuisine is especially well-suited to Costantino’s full-flavored, rustic recipes, and Scotti, a native Italian like Costantino, is the perfect chef to bring them to the table.

Included in the Tuesday night offerings will be Pesce Spada Alla Ghiotta, swordfish “glutton’s style” with tomato, capers and olives, and cauliflower salad; Vrasciole Alla Verbicarese, stuffed pork rolls in tomato sauce Verbicaro style, and potatoes layered with artichokes; and Tiella D’agnello, baked lamb shoulder chops with artichokes, peas and breadcrumbs. Here’s a link to the entire special menu for the evening.

Copies of both books will available for purchase, and Constantino – who also teaches classes in the Bay Area and leads culinary tours -- will be on hand to autograph your books and chat about the food.

Get to know southern-style Italian cuisine, meet cookbook author Rosetta Costentino, and appreciate recipes prepared by chef Donato Scotti, Tuesday night at Desco, 499 9th Street (at the corner of Washington) in Old Oakland.

You may make reservations for “An Evening with Rosetta Costantino” through the Desco website, or by calling the restaurant at 510 663-9000.