Feast of the Seven Fishes: A Brooklyn Italian’s Recipes Celebrating Food and Family

Daniel Paterna. PowerHouse, $39.95 (256p) ISBN 978-1-57687-915-3
In this exciting photo-heavy cookbook, graphic designer Paterna celebrates the culinary heritage of the Italian-Americans of Bensonhurst, Brooklyn. He shares dozens of beautiful family photos and anecdotes (beneath photos of his maternal grandparents’ passports, he writes: “My grandfather promised he would bring her back to America as his bride”) that span three generations. Paterna’s mother, Anne, typed out dozens of the family’s recipes on index cards and carefully converted “pinches” and “approximate timings” into real measures. Some of her recipe cards that have made their way into this book include baccala with caramelized bell peppers, lasagna, and squid stuffed with pine nuts and raisins. Paterna points out on which holidays these dishes are traditionally prepared, such as fried pizza for Good Friday, roasted lamb with asparagus for Easter Sunday, and struffoli (“a crusty, honey-soaked, Neopolitan dessert”) for Christmas Day. Paterna takes readers on a tour of Brooklyn’s many Italian specialty shops and shares stories of the business owners (Fredo at Queen Ann Ravioli “still repairs his 1912... pasta machine himself”). This distinctive blend of memoir and cookbook is nostalgia catnip for Italian-Americans. (Nov.)
Reviewed on : 11/14/2019
Release date: 10/15/2019
Genre: Lifestyle
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