Come into Cucina Lucia, my mother’s kitchen! Sit down and have a cup of coffee with us. She’s still here with me in my heart. Let me tell you about all of the wonderful and delicious Sicilian foods that my mother taught me how to make!
I’ll tell you about the everyday foods that we ate, nothing fancy, just regular Sicilian meals. The ingredients are easy to find in grocery markets although some you may have to find at specialty food markets. The recipes aren’t that difficult to make; that is, if you had my mother to cook with your whole life or have these recipes with easy directions to follow. It was these everyday foods that everyone who tasted them loved! These were just what and the way my mother always cooked. My mother’s meals were other people’s special foods; foods that, if they didn’t have them at my mother’s house, they might never taste them! Other foods, including some desserts and pastries, were special creations just for the holidays! We waited for them all year long to finally enjoy them!
Most of the recipes I will talk about will be, up until now, recipes that were never written down. There were no measurements or directions. The recipes are in my head; in my memory. I know what they look like, how they taste and how they are served. If they were not in my head, I would not be able to make them. Before I present them to you, I will be creating these recipes, writing down ingredients, measurements, and instructions on how to make them. Hopefully, you will be able to make them yourself!
In the next year, on my blog, I will tell you the stories and memories I have of spending time with my mother learning how to cook and bake. Most of these recipes have memories behind them and that is what I will share with you here as well as photographs of the foods I am describing. I think that as you read my stories and memories, it will bring back memories of your learning to cook in your mother’s kitchen, or just memories of growing up that you may have forgotten. I hope you will enjoy my memories as well as yours that this blog brings back to you!
My mother came from Pozzalo, Sicily, with her mother, Maria. They joined her father, Rosario, who had come 6 years earlier. When people came into this country, they settled in areas with others who also came from the same area. These people were their “paisans.” “Paisans” spoke the same dialect, had the same customs, and their foods were the same. They settled in the same neighborhood. They worked together. They played together. They celebrated together. They went to the same church. They opened businesses and depended on each other for those things they needed to live. These are the things that kept them together so they could make their way in America. They came to America in search of a better life and they worked very hard to attain it. They weren’t afraid of hard work!
I will be writing at least one blog per week to share my memories with you. I will tell you the memory that goes with each food, how I learned to make it, or what I remember from making it with my mother, Lucia. I will explain what they are and what is in them. My mother was an amazing cook! Her baking was beyond delicious! And she always shared it with everyone! That’s just what she did. That is what my father did. He would offer you the food off his plate! If you came to our house, you probably ate!
At my mother’s funeral, in 2006, men who had worked with my father told me what a great cook my mother was. I wondered how they knew. They told me. My father would share with them, let them have some of what he had brought to work for lunch that my mother had made. All those years ago, everything was made from scratch! So being a great cook was an art and a great talent!
I invite you to Cucina Lucia, my blog. I invite you to subscribe to my blog site. It is a FREE subscription that will notify you by e-mail when I publish a new blog. I ask that you share my blog with your friends and family on Facebook, Twitter, e-mail, other social media, and with others by word-of-mouth. I hope you will enjoy this journey with me and that your family and friends will enjoy it as well!
At the end of one year I plan to publish my cookbook, Cucina Lucia, which will include the stories of my memories, and my recipes with photographs.
My hope is that you will cook and bake using my recipes and share what you’ve made with your family and friends like my family has shared with the people in our lives! I hope you will enjoy everything I share with you!
Thank you for coming into my mother’s kitchen and having a cup of coffee with us!