Over 30 years ago Antonio Carluccio and Gennaro Contaldo separately left their native Italy for Britain where, in time, they met, worked together and established themselves as leading authorities on Italian cooking. In this compelling book - written to accompany the primetime BBC series - the two old friends have embarked upon an amazing journey back to their homeland to reconnect with their culinary heritage, explore past and current traditions and reveal the very soul of Italian gastronomy. Containing over 100 mouthwatering recipes, this extraordinary book goes beyond the cliches to reveal real Italian food, as cooked by real Italians. It includes an intriguing combination of classic dishes and ingredients as well as others showcasing the changes in style and influences that have become a part of the Italy of today. Reflecting the insights of both men into Italy then and now, Carluccio and Contaldo's return captures the essence of its authors - their humour, their wisdom, their curiosity and, most significantly, their shared passion for good simple food. It is an essential book for anyone with a genuine interest in Italian food.