Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Dominican Heritage Month, Day 8

Grandma was the best cook I ever knew. Whatever she made was like manna from heaven on a plate. I used to sit in a little chair in the kitchen sometimes and watch her move about with such confidence: a dab of this, a pinch of that, a handful of the other.

Everything from memory without books or measuring tools. It was like a choreography that I couldn't wait to learn.

Unfortunately I deluded myself into thinking Grandma would be with us forever and the only recipe I was able to hold on to was of her farina. Every time I make it, I am transported back to that Patchen Avenue apartment.

My Tia Gloris has done a great job mastering sancocho but still, I miss Grandma's rendition.

Luckily for me and other Dominican-Yorks like me who've neglected to save their family recipes, there's Tia Clara's Kitchen. This website has the most authentic dishes from my childhood and just now I decided to work my way through it, Julie and Julia style.

Why don't you get a bit adventurous and try cooking some Mondongo (tripe soup) with white rice and sliced avocados on the next cold and rainy night, and it might give you a small taste of what it was like to have grown up like me.

Wonderful, beautiful, Dominican me.

*besos...longing for the smell of old cooking grease*
nothing's yummier than chicken fried in grease that, just yesterday, was used for frying fish. YUM!