Acclaimed chef & restaurateur launches first cookbook

SICILIANO hits shelves.

SICILIANO is a contemporary Sicilian cookbook by acclaimed chef and restaurateur, Joe Vargetto. Known for his expertly prepared Sicilian cuisine in popular restaurants, Mister Bianco and Massi in Melbourne, Joe has put together a collection of recipes that everyone can enjoy preparing in their own homes.

While the recipes are inspired by Joe’s Sicilian heritage, SICILIANO is contemporary and sophisticated in design – taking fine dining restaurant dishes and making them easy for everyone to try in their own home.

Joe expresses his authentic take on Sicilian cuisine every day in his own restaurants, where locals and visitors alike come to experience his fine dining cuisine in convivial settings. And now, Joe brings the food to life through delicious, modern interpretations of the recipes in SICILIANO.

The contemporary black ‘leather’ cover of SICILIANO opens to contrasting, bright Sicilian tiles before taking readers on a culinary journey of Joe’s life and a full menu of ideas. From much loved Italian ‘lunchbox’ recipes inspired by Joe’s mother to antipastini, primi to pasta e riso, pesce to carne, and finally dolce.

Each with their own story, the mouth-watering recipes in the book feature the fresh seasonal produce, vibrant colour and distinctive flavours of Sicily. Discover dishes such as Jerusalem Artichoke Soup with Pan-Fried Scallops & Fried Grissini; Blood Orange Risotto with Tuna Carpaccio and Poached Quince in Chinotto with Zanzibar Rum Gelato. There is also a pictorial glossary of Sicilian ingredients to help with identifying the produce when shopping.

With more than two decades of experience in the industry, this book has been a labour of love for Joe. His passion for food led him to an apprenticeship in one of Melbourne’s finest restaurants and further training within famed kitchens in Italy before returning to his hometown of Melbourne. Cemented in the city’s restaurant scene, Joe is now passing on his expertise to the public so they can enjoy the beautiful dishes at home.

Beautifully photographed by HiSylvia Photography, the easy-to-follow recipes, from everyday to entertaining, will ensure that SICILIANO becomes a much-used cookbook in kitchens across Australia.

SICILIANO (published by Melbourne Books, RRP $49.95) is now available at all good book stores, online, in Mister Bianco and online direct order from the restaurant at

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