Mark’s Bio

Mark Leslie with Pasta

Mark Leslie, seen cooking on NBC’s The Today Show and Hallmark Channel’s Home and Family, loves to cook for anyone with an appetite, vacations in Italy every year and lives to eat his way through every plate of pasta and cone of gelato placed before him.

His award-winning book, Beyond the Pasta: Recipes, Language & Life with an Italian Family, tells of his life in Italy while cooking with an Italian grandmother. He shares his food experiences on his blog at beyondthepasta and has led cooking classes in California, Georgia, Minnesota, Texas, and across Alabama. On his recurring cooking segment for NBC-affiliate WSFA-12, Mark stresses the importance of fresh, locally sourced ingredients and seasonal cooking.

Mark, his home, and book have been featured in such national publications and blogs as House Beautiful, Paula Deen, Food Republic, The Kitchn, Apartment Therapy, Field & Stream, and The Daily Meal. 

He has judged for state level high school culinary events, taught classes to vocational high school culinary programs, and the US Department of Education recently selected Mark as a judge for the 2012 National Education Startup Challenge—a program for students to develop an innovative solution to an education problem.

A Chicago-area native and “Yankee” by birth, Mark has lived in Alabama for over 24 years, and celebrates the fact that he started life eating farina, progressed to grits, and finally arrived at polenta. Buonissimo!*For TV/Radio appearances: View List

*For list of Publications/Blogs featuring Mark and “Beyond the Pasta”: View List