In her latest PBS special, celebrity chef, author and restaurateur Lidia Bastianich invites six celebrity guests of different ethnic backgrounds to her holiday table: Christopher Walken, actor and childhood friend; actress Rita Moreno; Ann Curry, television journalist; model and television host Padma Lakshmi; celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson; and conductor Carlo Ponti Jr.
The guests get together, sharing their childhood memories, remembering what they coveted most and recounting the events that eventually propelled them to leave the countries they once called home. Many of these recollections are brought back to life through food.
Bastianich is also marking the publication of her 14th cookbook, “Lidia’s Mastering the Art of Italian Cuisine.”
“I really enjoy demystifying food,” she explained. “In the book, I cover all the techniques — braising, basting, roasting, steaming, grilling, and so on.”
“Lidia Celebrates America: Home for the Holidays” airs on WHYY-TV on Thursday at 8 p.m. Click on the link above to hear her conversation with NewsWorks Tonight’s host Dave Heller.