Here's a strange and interesting article found recently on Grubstreet. It's the apparent New Phenomenon of Cooking the Recipes of Deceased Celebrities, and the article includes recipes by Elvis and his Fried Chicken, Miles Davis Chili, and Dean Martins Hamburger.
I myself have long been interested in cooking the favorite foods of celebrities both living and those who have passed on, especially those of Italian ancestry and in particular Frank Sinatra. And so I have included a recipe for Frank Sinatra's favorite of Spaghetti Pomodoro (Tomato Sauce). If you make this recipe, note that frank did not like pieces of garlic in his food. He did love the flavor and the way to achieve this feat as pointed out in the recipe is to start the dish saute whole cloves of garlic in olive oil, and when they just start getting brown, you remove the garlic which has left its flavor behind in the olive oil. Mangia!
"A strange mini-phenomenon is going on: Recipes from long-dead celebrities are resurfacing for no apparent reason. There’s Dean Martin’s spartan burger recipe, Miles Davis’s chili, and Elvis’s favorite fried chicken. We wondered how the found recipes held up as actual recipes, so we gave comedian (and amateur cook) David Rees the job of making each, with the stipulation that he report back and rank the recipes against one another.
Celebrities are just like you and me: They wear sweatpants to the coffee shop; they worry about money; and they apparently love to cook!" Article by David Rees, found on Grubstreet. Interesting!
FRANK SINATRA'S SPAGHETTI with TOMATO SAUCE
5 Tablespoons olive oil
1 Small Onion, minced
1 28 oz. Can Whole Italian Plum Tomatoes
1/10 teaspoon Peperoncino (Red Pepper Flakes)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dry Basil
1/4 teaspoon dry Oregano
7 cloves garlic, peeled and left Whole
1 lb Imported Italian Spaghetti
Best Quality Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano
1) Put Olive Oil and garlic cloves in a 3 quart or larger pot. Turn flame on to medium heat. Cook garlic for about four minutes until it is lightly browned. Remove garlic from pot and discard.
2) Put whole tomatoes in blender or food processor and blend for two minutes.
3) Add tomatoes and all remaining ingredients to pot. Bring the ingredients up to the boil, then lower flame until sauce is a a low gentle simmer. Cook for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally, scraping bottom of pot to keep sauce from burning.
4) After the sauce has been cooking for about 15 minutes, add Spaghetti to a separate pot of boiling salted water. Cook spaghetti according to directions on spaghetti package.
5) Drain the Spaghetti in a colander. Add spaghetti back to pot it cooked in. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil and mix. Add half the Tomato Sauce and mix.
6) Plate out spaghetti onto four plates. Add a little more tomato sauce on top of already dressed Spaghetti. Serve and pass the Grated Cheesse. Enjoy!
SEE "SUNDAY SAUCE" For FRANK'S FAVORITE RECIPES, STORIES, and ...
"Yes," Eating Pizza Made by The Maestro DOM DeMARCO
Is a Religious Experience !!!
Much has been said of the now famed Pizzeria (DiFarra Pizza) on Avenue J in Brooklyn, New York the Capital of Thee Best Pizza in the whole United States of America, bar-none, even Manhattan. Brooklyn lays claim to the Top two Pizzerias in the country, the top of the list 1 and 2, number 1, The Best and number 2, the second best. Well no, I don't know if I should put it that way, as it sound s as one is better than the other, which is not ht e case, as they are both equally good, equally Great and equally the Best Pizza and the Best Pizzerias in the United States, though they are are little different than one another. The Pizza at both Totonno's on Neptune Avenue in Coney Island, Brooklyn, New York and Di Farra Pizza on Avenue J in Brooklyn are both otherworldly specimens of some the Finest Pizza on other and the Undisputed Best Pizza in America.
Wow, got off on a tangent about both Di Farra and Totonno's when I just intended to talk about Di Farra Pizza, Dom DeMarco the Maestro of Di Farra's and the Religious experience that it is to go there, watch Dominic masterfully make Pizza after glorious Pizza (without the help of anyone else), to watch in awe and anticipation and Salivation til you finally get yours (after about a hour or hour and a half wait), you hold it in your hand like a precious baby, and then to sink your teeth into it, savoring each wondrous bite after the other. "Yes," it is truly a religious experience, that is, if you are a great lover of this wonderful invention, created in Napoli, spread throughout the the Italian Peninsular and then across the Atlantic to America from Italian Immigrants where Gennaro Lombardi opened the First Pizzeria in America on Prince Street in New York City some 100 years ago or so.
Back to Di Farra and Pizzaiolo Extraordinaire, Mr. Dominic DeMarco. It is Dominic that makes Di Farra what it is, it certainly isn't the Pizzeria itself which is ultra plain and even appalling to some. Mr. DeMarco's pizzas are just about as close to absolute perfection in the Pizza Making World, a world in which New York City excels and has only one rival in Naples, Italy and the whole of Italy itself. Mr. De Marco has the magic touch, with perfect dough, the perfect balance of ingredients, tomato and other ingredient ratio to cheese, and this include Mr. Demarcos judicious use of Olive Oil which is right-on and a little magic touch that whoever complains about it, just does not know there Pizza and Italian Food on a whole. We Italians love our olive oil. And those who complain are unaware that it is a condiment that adds the final last touch to many dishes before they are eaten. Dominic knows this and should not be discourage against his generous use of it by those who do not understand the proper essence of the Italian Table. So please, keep your traps shut, if you don't like it don't eat it, this countries finest examples of the Pizza Art.
And on to the religious experience of Di Farra, Dom DeMarco and the mans artistry with Pizza. There is nothing quite like it in the entire Pizza World. There does not exist, to my knowledge any place in the world that has an elderly man making a hundred plus Pizzas a day in a place that has endless lines, day and night. Pizza that are so perfect, words can not describe People line up for greatness and artistry, and for a couple of slices of the most marvelous pizza this side of Naples, and to watch this passionate little old man work his heart out, not getting, not allowing anyone else to make a pie at his beloved Pizzeria. The man is elderly. He's worked his whole life. He makes such a magical thing that people line up each and every day to see him and eat one of his many masterpieces. With business like this, he could hire to other Pizzaiolos to help him, doubling or tripling his business and and financial intake. He could hire two guys and make pizza aloing with them, or sit back and get three guys to do it. At his age, he's entitled to. But know, Dom DeMarco loves what he does, he loves his Pizza, each and every one that passes that counter and into thousands of appreciative hands. The man feels that no one else can make a Pizza the way he does and wants to serve to his customers. No one else who has his skills, his passion and love for the Pizza, thus he does it all himself. And this my friends is the reason that going to Di Farra's to watch Dominic the maestro in action, all by himself while hundreds of people line up every day, waiting an hour and a half to two hours just to get a Pizza (not just any old Pizza mind you). "It's a Religious Experience." Truly! A show and there is nothing like it in the World, Dom DeMarco, a man and his Pizza, America's Best, and something to rival that other World Pizza Capital, Napoli.
Of all the fine traditions of the Italian-American enclave
in the United State, the Sunday
afternoon ritual of making and
Eating a Sunday Sauce is Italian-America’s most Time-Honored.
Mamma, Grandma (Nonna) will make her Celebrated Sunday Sauce. What is it? Well there are a number of variations on the theme. Most Sunday Sauces are made with Italian Sausages,
Braciole, and Meatballs. Some people make their versions with; Beef Neck, while others make their Gravy (Sunday Sauce) with just Sausage and Meatballs. Some may throw some Chicken Thighs into this
mix. Sunday Sauces can be made with any combination of these aforementioned
The meats are slowly simmered
for several hours with tomato, and minced onions and garlic.
I generally like to make my Sunday Sauce with Saus-ages, Meatballs, and Pork Ribs. Other
times I’ll make it with Sausage, Ribs, and Braciole. An old tradition in some families is that
mother or Grandma would start the Sauce early on a Sunday morning, get it sim-mering
for a couple hours on top of the stove, then put it in the oven for a
couple hours while everyone goes to
Church. When you get back home, the sauce would be ready. Ready to be devoured
We would usually
start our Sunday meal with the most traditional Italian-American-Antipasto
peppers, Salami, Olives, and Provolone. After that, it’s on to the Main Event, Maccheroni and Sunday Sauce. Something so
Blissfully Pleasurable and Sub-lime, that it is
When a meal
centered around a Sunday Sauce is
announced, one can have visions of Blissful Ecstasyat thoughts of Eating Pasta laden with Italian Sausages, Savory Meatballs,
and Succulent Pork Ribs. All this has been slowly simmered
to culinary perfection. Yes just the thoughts
can enrapture one into a Delightful Frenzy of the
Most Blissful Feelings of smelling, seeing, and consuming Sausages, Meat-balls and Gravy. Yes a Sunday Sauce can and does
have such effects on one’s mind, body, and soul. And, I do not want to sound prejudice, but this
is pure fact, it is the Male of the Italian-American species who Love The
Sunday Sauce in all its form, far more
than the female sex. True! Meatballs too. And Italian-American men and boys Love and
hold oh-so-dare, their Meatballs, Sunday
Sauce, Sausage & Peppers, and
Meatball Parm Sandwiches.
Sauce that my mother would makewas with Sausages, Meatballs, and Beef Braciole. My memories
are vivid watching my mother stuffing the Braciole with garlic, parsley, Pecorino, and Pignoli Nuts, then tying
the bundles with butchers cord to hold the Braciole together as they slowly simmered in the Gravy.
Another fond memory was helping my
roll and shape the Meatballs.
As for me, my
Sunday Sauce will vary dependingon my mood. One thing I Love to do when makingmy sauce is to add Pork Spareribs to the “Gravy.” “Gravy” by the way is what many
people in the New York area call Sunday
Sauce, particularly in Brooklyn. Not many people
make there Sunday Sauce with
the Pork Ribs, but to me they are phenomenal, and anyone
who tries them, they are immediately hook-ed. As I think back, none of the ladies in our
family put Pork Spare Ribs into their Gravy.
I guess I read or heard about
doing it, and I believe it was about 14 years ago or so that I Started adding theRibs into my Sunday Sauce. I haven’t looked back ever since. I
Love them, as does everyone whom I serve them to.
Whenever I make my sauce with Pork Ribs, my
friends go nuts for them. Many are
surprised, as they might never have had Ribs in a Sunday
Gravy before. They didn’t know
could use Pork Spareribs.
The ribs are traditional with some but not
all. It is quite a shame for those who
don’t add the ribs as they give the
sauce a quite wonderful flavor, and the Ribs themselves, “Yumm.”
The Ribs that simmer long and slow
and are very tender,” They lit-erally
Whenever I make the sauce, and I’m dishing it out to friends and family, I always make sure that I have my fare share
of the Ribs. Pork Ribs cooked in this
manner, simmering in the sauce are oh so suc-culent and tasty, they are Beyond-Belief-Tasty.
These Sunday Sauce
Ribs are, “Out-of-this-World” and friends, one-by-one, go nuts for them.
remember the time I first met my friend John
Cataneo. We were having a dinner party with Ada, Jimmy, Pat and
Gina Parrotta, Ronny “C,” Bobby Shack. Jimmy had invited John and his wife Maria.
I had never met
either of them before. John and Maria had eaten
already and were not
hungry so Johnny told me just to give
him a small portion when I was dishing the Gravy out.
I guess it was so good, Johnny shyly came back
and asked if he could have a couple more ribs.
“No problem Johnny. Enjoy!”
And what to serve
with the Sunday Sauce you ask? Any short
Maccheroni such as Rigatoni, Ziti, or Gnocchi are best.
The rituals of cooking, serving, and eating
Sunday Sauce is a time honored one. It is
quite a beautiful thing, same as making Mole in Mexico or Cassoulet in France. They are all wonderful things of Beauty.
They take time and effort to make, and are made and served
with Love. These dishes bring together friends and family,
and for Italian-Americans, the Sunday Sauce is The King of all dishes.
If you utter the term Sunday Sauce to any number
of millions of Italian-Americans, they
salivating at the simple mention of its name. The wheels start turning in their heads,
of how tasty it is and all the different components; the Meatballs, Sausages, Braciole, maybe Ribs, Beef Neck, or Pig Skin Braciole, the Pasta, and the Gravy itself.
They think about sitting
at the table
with friends and or family, people they
They’ll ponder the
Antipasti, wondering what it might be; Mixed Salumi, Baked Clams,
Grilled Calamari? And with
the meal, there will surely be Wine, Italian Wine, maybe a good Chianti or Montepulciano d’Abruzzo. With Uncle Frank and Uncle Tony, the wine
was usually Carlo Rossi Paisano or Gallo Hearty Burgundy, two solid Italian-American
They think about the warmth in the air, of loved ones, Sinatra, Dino, the Sunday Sauce.“It’s
a beautiful thing!!!” If you’ve never done it, “Try it!” If you haven’t cooked one
for some time, plan a get-together with friends and family, soon. Sunday Sauce, It brings people
togeth-er, in a most Delightful way, and
as the Big Boys would say, “It’s a Beautiful Thing.”
Daniel Bellino Zwicke
Excerpted from Daniel Bellino's forthcoming book "La Tavola" Broadway Ffith Press, NY NY