Food of the Italian Islands Available Now!

Written by Katie Parla on April 1, 2023

85 authentic recipes and 120 stunning photographs from the sunbaked beaches, coastal villages, and rolling hillsides of Sicily, Sardinia, and beyond.

Food of the Italian Islands is the follow-up to my critically acclaimed book Food of the Italian South and it was half a decade in the making! The book was written, photographed, printed, and bound in Italy and was released on March 7, 2023. Order a signed copy from my website or (while supplies last) from Labyrinth Books(Princeton), Bold Fork Books (DC), Kitchen Arts & Letters (NYC), Fiorella(Rochester), Cellar Door Provisions (Chicago), Libreria Pino (SF), Omnivore (SF), Sorelle (Charleston), Now Serving (LA), Book Larder(Seattle), and Otherwise (Roma). Unsigned copies are available on Amazon.

About Food of the Italian Islands

I am beyond excited to debut Food of the Italian Islands, a transportive cookbook inviting readers through Sicily, Sardinia, and Italy’s lesser-known island destinations so you can sink your teeth into the secrets of their rustic, romantic dishes. I will take you through the streets of Palermo where my great-grandfather was born, across the caper fields of volcanic Pantelleria, into the kitchens of Sardinia for lessons in ornate pasta making, and to the pristine waters of Ponza to dive for sea urchins. And no island adventure with me would be complete without a jaunt through the Venetian lagoon on my fishing boat Laura!


But Food of the Italian Islands isn’t just an island journey with your favorite Jersey girl. There are also over 85 recipes, both original and reimagined, that showcase the allure of the islands, including pane frattau featuring Sardinia’s beloved flatbread; bigoli in salsa, a party pasta popular in Venice; coniglio all’ischitana, braised rabbIt in the style of Ischia; torta caprese, Capri’s flourless chocolate-almond cake; and an array of pesto sauces from Pantelleria, Trapani, Linsoa, and Carloforte that will have you asking, “Pesto genovese? Who’s she?” There’s a whole fresh pasta section, complete with QR codes to demo videos, that will have you crafting Sicilian and Sardinian shapes in no time.

The cookbook’s feature pages delve into the rich cultural and culinary fabric of the destinations, providing historical insight while documenting island pleasures to uncover such as the fried delicacies dominating Palermo’s street food scene and an overview on the boozy choose-your-own-journey to making infused spirits. And obviously there is an ode to my favorite island ride, the FIAT Panda, which handles the unpaved backroads of the islands like a dream.

Order now! 

Nice People Said Good Things About Food of the Italian Islands

I can’t blurb this cookbook in good conscience because any peek inside will enrage you at being wherever you are instead of the wonderful Italian islands Katie has so thoughtfully explored and shared culinary insights from. Buyer beware! (Aziz Ansari)

Katie has been my soulful  Italian travel guide for years and this book is like having all her deep insightful tips and tricks in your backpack! I truly fell in love with Italian cooking after experiencing the cuisine on the islands. Such intense and amazing flavors. I’m cooking every dang recipe in this book! (Eric Wareheim)

Food of the Italian Islands is a glorious book filled with exploration and discovery in which Katie graciously shares everything she’s learned along the way. (Dan Richer, Chef and Owner of Razza)

Reading Katie Parla’s latest book is like taking a private tour through the Italian Islands with her. She delves into the foods of places you may be familiar with, like Sicily and Sardinia, but also takes us on a journey into smaller, lesser known places with cuisines all their own. Katie continues her mission to reach us the diversity of Italian cooking and culture in this follow up to Tasting Rome and Food of the Italian South. (Missy Robbins, Chef and Owner of Lilia and Misi)

I have spent the better part of my life trying to learn about Italy. I’m always mesmerized by the food, the culture and the people. With this book, Katie Parla proves once again that there is always so much more to learn and be surprised by. These recipes are a breathtaking look into what I believe is the greatest cuisine and the most fascinating people in the world. Get a copy quick, and get lost in it! (Marc Vetri)

This is such a beautiful and special book to me. Since my father’s family moved from Sicily to America in 1955, I have tried to understand and rediscover the culture that they left behind. Katie has written a meaningful and purposeful book directly from the heart of the islands. Every time I open it, I search for and find new meaning. (Joe Beddia, Chef and Owner of Pizzeria Beddia)

Order now! 

Some Nice Press About the Book, Including Recipes!

Learn Sardegna’s spaghetti secrets on the Robb Report: How To Make Spaghetti alla Bottarga, the Classic Sardinian Pasta Packed with Umami

The NYT wants you to be an armchair traveler: Skip The Flight and the Ferry with ‘Food of the Italian Islands’

Vice agrees: This New Italian Cookbook is the Sicilian Trip You’ve Been Dreaming About

I also chatted to Vogue: A New Book Surveys the Eclectic Food Traditions of the Italian Islands

Want to know how to make my perfect sandwich? Read The Philadelphia Inquirer: For Cookbook Author Katie Parla, a Great Sandwich Has Only Two Ingredients

If you’re into fried cheese (who isn’t) get the recipe for seadas in Delish: This Cheese-Stuffed Dish is Criminally Underrated

My beloved Gola Podcast broke down how I published a book in Italy in the Food of the Italian Islands episode

Catch me talking about FOTII (what else) on Fox5: Discovering the Italian Islands Through Katie Parla’s New Cookbook

And finally, watch me go through some of my fav FOTII recipes on KTLA: Katie Parla Shares Recipes From New Cookbook

America Domani conducted a fun interview about the book. Read Part 1 and Part 2 today!

Order now! 

Keep Reading

Polpette di Pesce Spada | Sicilian Style Swordfish Meatballs Katie Parla

Recipe: Polpette di Pesce Spada (Swordfish Balls)

Chicken Cacciatore Recipe - Katie Parla

Recipe: Pollo alla Cacciatora (Chicken Cacciatore)

Tipping in Italy | Katie Parla

Tips for Tipping in Italy