For the Trigianis, cooking has always been a family affair–and the kitchen was the bustling center of their home, where folks gathered around the table for good food, good conversation, and the occasional eruption. Example: Being thrown out of the kitchen because one’s Easter bread kneading technique isn’t up to par. As Adriana says: “When the Trigianis reach out and touch someone, we do it with food.” Like the recipes that have been handed down for generations from mother to daughter and grandmother to granddaughter, the family’s celebrations are also anchored to the life and laughter around the table. We learn how Grandmom Yolanda Trigiani sometimes wrote her recipes in code, or worked from memory, guarding her recipes carefully. And we meet Grandma Lucia Bonicelli, who never raised her voice and believed that when people fight at the dinner table, the food turns to poison in the body.
Adriana Trigiani’s voice springs to life from the first page of Cooking with My Sisters, a collection of beloved family recipes that the Trigianis have been enjoying for generations. But there’s much more here than just the food. Peppered with hilarious family anecdotes, poignant letters, and exquisite color photographs, Cooking with My Sisters draws us into the warm and witty world of the Trigiani clan. Each recipe has a story behind it, and each chapter has tips from different sisters, reflecting the unique personalities of the latest generation of Trigiani women.
Here are mainstay meals, featured in sections such as “The Big Life” and “The Big Wow,” which include the chapters “Pasta, or as We Called It, Maccheroni” and “Food We Hated as Kids but Love to Serve Now.” Accessible to any cook, the recipes range from Chicken and Polenta, Zizi Mary’s Rice Soup, and Gnocchi to favorite desserts like Grandmom’s Buttermilk Cake–and all the delectable dishes are geared toward bringing your family together.
Written with Adriana Trigiani’s trademark humor and verve, this wonderful book will appeal to anyone who values the bonds that food, community, and cultural tradition can provide.
From the Hardcover edition.
My four sisters and I love to read and we love to entertain. This book shares the Trigiani family treasure that inspires both passions: the recipes that were handed down to us and the stories that have sustained and enriched us. Like many other women of our generation, we learned to cook by watching our mothers and our grandmothers who tapped the ancient roots of three Italian regions while adapting their recipes using American innovation and ingredients. Recipes and techniques were to be shared among us, but never outside the family-–until now. Cooking with My Sisters
brings you into our family kitchen. Here are our recipes and our stories. Buon appetito!
–From the Introduction by Adriana TrigianiFrom the Hardcover edition.
Excerpted from Cooking with My Sisters by Adriana Trigiani and Mary Yolanda Trigiani, with Lucia Anna, Antonia, Francesca, and Ida Trigiani. Copyright © 2004 by Adriana Trigiani and Mary Yolanda Trigiani, with Lucia Anna, Antonia, Francesca, and Ida Trigiani. Excerpted by permission of Random House Trade Paperbacks, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
About Adriana Trigiani
ADRIANA TRIGIANI is an award-winning playwright, television writer, and documentary filmmaker. The author of the bestselling Big Stone Gap trilogy and the novel Lucia, Lucia, Trigiani has written the screenplay for the movie Big Stone Gap, which she will also direct. She lives in New York City with her husband and daughter.
About Mary Trigiani
Mary Trigiani is a consultant and lecturer on issues driving authenticity in leadership. An expert message crafter -- for business leaders just-crowned to well-seasoned -- Mary's own message emerges in the new book she has written with her sister, bestselling novelist Adriana Trigiani. COOKING WITH MY SISTERS: ONE HUNDRED YEARS OF FAMILY RECIPES FROM BARI TO BIG STONE GAP, a memoir/cookbook, is a true story about the power of cooking to nourish and sustain the traditions of an Italian-American family aimed at leaving the world a better place. Mary shows how a visit back to unvarnished family experiences and values can help unearth one’s authentic voice -- something Mary believes is essential not only to effective communicating but to compelling leadership as well. She lives in San Francisco.
“Cooking with My Sisters is the best Italian cookbook ever written by women from the American south. Adriana Trigiani and her sisters had the genius to unite a Southern sensibility with Italian cooking, and the stories of the Trigiani family alone are worth the price of admission.”
From the Hardcover edition.