In our house, the kitchen isn’t the only source of where our meals are prepared, it is also the hub of where family meetings are held and informal get-togethers’ are had. It is a place where intimate conversations take place.
The kitchen is the place my mother, Josie, gave me my first informal cooking lessons. Food, family, and life lessons all had their origin in the kitchen. Respect and food go together in Italian families like Sunday church and the whole family sitting down together at Sunday dinner.
My parents, parents came here from Colonnella, Italy and Saponara, Sicily in the years 1911 and 1912. Coming through Ellis Island in New York and settling on the East Coast.
My parents had my sister and I. If you know anything about Italian heritage you know that family and food are synonymous when there is one, you know you’re going to have the other. Portion control was never part of the Italian heritage.
My Grandmom, Mom, and Aunts would say Mangia, Mangia (eat, eat). The more you would eat the happier they would become.
I could remember Mom and Dad making
Mom made ravioli too, most of the time filling it with ricotta mixture. My Dad liked the wide pasta; he called them ropes; but they are known now as pappardelle, a wide noodle.
Those would be paired with a nice thick gravy (sauce) or another name for it was Bolognese gravy (sauce) as we call it now. In a lot of
Now I know all or some of the Italians are going to respond to this and I do know some Italians call it sauce. In our
If you are an insider (inside the family circle) its called gray. Everyone else that calls it sauce is an outsider. I do know that chefs call it sauce, but you have to understand this is a cultural expression; this is how we identify ourselves.
Love and generosity is an ancestral trait of Italian heritage. Steeped in tradition, growing up had its rituals.
From Sunday Mass to then coming home and having “a just fried” meatball with gravy (sauce) on top with a piece of Italian crusty bread and considering it a “little snack” before having our Sunday dinner.
Those times you never heard you were going to the mall to shop: there were no malls at that time. Stores at that time were never open on Sundays. There were the “blue laws”, which were abolished when they realized how much money was to be made.
Somehow I wish it could be like that again. Families were closer they relied on each other. There
Now I am getting off the beaten path of a food blog; but this is reminiscent of my mother, Josie and the many loving memories and lessons she taught me as a child and a young wife.
Nevertheless, I will get back to those times, again, filling you in and letting you know how Josie’s Daughter’s Kitchen came about.
This is the beginning of Josie’s Daughter’s Kitchen. I hope you will be prompted into trying some of our recipes. And with this recollection be entertained as I recall my childhood of “growing up Italian”.