Giovanna Bellia La Marca uses simple methods and readily available ingredients to teach the straightforward and delectable everyday cooking of Sicily. She features examples of elaborate dishes developed by the monzu, a class of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century professional cooks, now effortlessly recreated with modern appliances. La Marca also introduces her readers to the practice of transforming almond paste into beautiful and realistic marzipan fruits, a traditional Sicilian art form.
La Marca was born in Ragusa, Sicily. She came to the United States at the age of 10, and has since then kept alive her love of the island with frequent trips there. Now a retired art and Italian teacher living in Cliffside Park, New Jersey, she devotes herself to cooking, writing, and traveling with her husband.