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Not My Mother's Kitchen: Rediscovering Italian-American Cooking Through Stories and Recipes

Serving up a tale that is part memoir and part cookbook, acclaimed foodie Rob Chirico shares his culinary journey after growing up with an Italian-American mother who was hopeless in the kitchen.

Rob Chirico learned to cook as a defense against his mother’s awful meals. Unlike how we imagine the traditional Italian mother—creating mouthwatering dishes like Cacio e Pepe and Summer Puttanesca—Mrs. Chirico did not like to cook. Dinner often meant a bowl full of Chef Boyardee Spaghetti and Meatballs or sandwiches of cold cuts. But Rob’s home was filled with a lot of laughter and much love.

An affectionate and nostalgic look back at his journey from the frozen food aisle of a Queens grocery store to gourmet chef, Rob Chirico has filled this memoir with over 70 recipes that he has perfected along the way. If your idea of heaven is food and family, dig in.

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Sample recipes from Not My Mother's Kitchen: Rediscovering Italian-American Cooking Through Stories and Recipes

Gorgonzola Sauce

Gorgonzola shares a trait with almost all blue cheese. You love it or hate it. I know someone who cannot be in the same room with itbut we are still friends.

(1 Votes)

Bread and Cheese Soup

What can be more comforting than a delicious bowl of soup? This recipe for Bread and Cheese Soup combines broth with bread and two types of cheese, resulting in a soup that is hearty and will warm you up inside and out. You'll love how easy it is to make this rustic soup, too, as you can get it on the table and have it ready to serve within about an hour. You'll love having this quick soup recipe up your sleeve the next time you need to make dinner in a hurry! This recipe is a twist on the classic Zuppa alla Pavase, which includes eggs.

(1 Votes)

Grilled Romaine Lettuce with Parmigiano

My father fancied himself as the great grill man, but the hallowed Weber saw only the typical array of steak, franks, and the occasional burger. He never grilled chicken orgoodness nofish. I wonder what my father would have thought of grilling vegetables, and particularly lettuce. I asked the Magic 8 Ball I still have from my youth, but the answer was Reply hazy. Call again later.

(1 Votes)

A Thoroughly Unorthodox Puttanesca

I have served this dish to people who would rather gargle with Drano than eat anchovies, and I have almost patently had positive results. The fish sauce is very salty, and you may not need to season the sauce any further. Although a true puttanesca would never be served with Parmigiano, my family prefers it. The choice is yours.

(1 Votes)

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