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8 Italian American Recipes From Lidia Bastianich

The Italian cooking guru uses simple ingredients for luscious dishes

Lidia Bastianich appears on NBC News'

Legendary chef Lidia Bastianich in her comfort zone. — NBCU Photo Bank/Getty Images

Lidia Bastianich is one of the cooking world's most legendary chefs in Italian and Italian American cuisine, with best-selling cookbooks, several restaurants and an Emmy-winning show called Lidia's Italy.

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She's passionate about food: As she said in a recent TV interview, "It connects us. It expresses emotion. It expresses care. It expresses love."

Enjoy this selection of Bastianich's recipes, many of which reflect her focus on creating succulent flavors with the traditional building blocks of tomatoes, vegetables, garlic and olive oil.

1. Wild Mushroom Soup

This recipe can be a bit of a splurge, since it requires a large quantity of wild mushrooms, including porcini, shiitake, chanterelle and hen-of-the-woods. But you can use a single variety to make an excellent soup.

Per serving: 359 calories, 4g saturated fat, 31g carbohydrates, 5g protein, 9g fiber, 271mg sodium

2. Marinated Winter Squash

Squash (in Italian, zucca) is a versatile ingredient hearty enough to star in this side dish. Try it with butternut, acorn or Hubbard squash.

Per serving: 441 calories, 3g saturated fat, 22g carbohydrates, 2g protein, 3g fiber, 202mg sodium

3. Broccoli Rabe and Sausage

Bastianich's version of this classic Italian dish gives you the opportunity to make your own sausages, or you can buy your favorite brand of sweet Italian sausage. The rich, savory flavor of the sausages is a perfect complement to the slightly bitter bite of the broccoli rabe and garlic.

Per serving (not including sausage): 172 calories, 2g saturated fat, 7g carbohydrates, 7g protein, 6g fiber, 365mg sodium

4. Baked Radicchio

You know radicchio as the sweet and bitter vegetable that offers a complex note when added raw to salads — but it becomes tender and slightly caramelized when cooked with olive oil, butter, garlic and onion. You could serve this over polenta for a satisfying lunch or vegetable course.

Per serving: 255 calories, 9g saturated fat, 8g carbohydrates, 8g protein, 1g fiber, 562mg sodium

Next page: 4 more tasty Lidia Bastianich recipes. »

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