cover image Tiny Hot Dogs: A Memoir in Small Bites

Tiny Hot Dogs: A Memoir in Small Bites

Mary Giuliani. Running Press, $24 (256p) ISBN 978-0-7624-6556-9

Giuliani (The Cocktail Party) hilariously recounts her evolution from a girl with “one eyebrow” in a Long Island household that “couldn’t be more Italian if we tried” into a successful caterer to the stars who appears on television with Rachael Ray and Ina Garten. The author recalls her Catholic childhood in a Jewish neighborhood (she “electively went to Hebrew school”), her coming-of-age as an aspiring actor in the city, and her pivot into the world of luxury catering. Giuliani is candid on such personal topics as her battle with infertility, and has a habit of asking “heavy questions for someone who slings tiny hot dogs for a living” (“Once we pick out our ‘perfect’ role, are we committed to it for life?”) . The book abounds with brushes with celebrity, including sitting at the table next to Robert De Niro (after five minutes of telling him about her family in Montauk, he politely turned away, then asked for her number on the way out) and serving tuna tacos to her heartthrob, the “perfectly imperfect” Alec Baldwin. Recipes punctuate Giuliani’s anecdotes, some of them client favorites—such as Mini Italian Challah Grilled Cheese—some family go-tos including My Mom’s Friend Rita’s Chocolate Cake, and, of course, there are three recipes for tiny hot dogs. Giuliani’s entertaining memoir is packed with satisfying stories and recipes that readers will guiltily enjoy. [em](Apr.) [/em]