August 21, 2015 |
The iconic foodstuffs of the Delaware Valley are many. The roast pork sandwich has rightfully become a point of pride, recognized in publications local and national. And we can't seem to shake our notoriety for the cheesesteak, even though our local food scene has evolved so far beyond this humble sandwich. There is, however, one summertime staple that is pure Philly, deserves elite culinary status, and is largely unsung. My grandmother made it, and yours might have, too. If you have Italian heritage, a Jersey Shore tradition, and someone who likes to cook in your family, it may well be on this weekend's meal plan.
May 7, 1997 |
Though it is no doubt heresy Downtown in South Philadelphia, there is a clear move at the supermarket toward the marketing of "homemade-style" spaghetti sauces, most often distinguished by their Ball-jar like bottles. (You can tell it is heresy, of course, because those bottled concoctions are referred to as "sauce" and not the true appellation, "gravy. ") Nonetheless, it is only fair to try to give the glassed-in reds their due. So the Daily News gathered a panel of worthy judges with good Italian eating roots to dive into a half-dozen of the new bottled entries.
December 23, 2004 |
We were tooling along one of Phoenix's endless multi-lane quasi-highways a few years ago when the heresy was committed. The woman who would be my sister-in-law if all the familial connections involved marriage licenses was running down the list of things to do and items to buy in preparation for Christmas dinner. One of them - and her inflection indicated it was not a minor consideration - was to pick up gravy at the supermarket. Oh dear, I thought, trying earnestly - politely - not to betray my feelings.
December 1, 1999 |
Philadelphians may set records in buying prepared pasta sauce, but homemade also ranks high here. Hairdresser Nicole Bologna, 23, of South Philadelphia, says she not only makes her own gravy, she's "never even tasted jarred sauce. " (Vocabulary note: In South Philadelphia, if it comes in a jar, it's called sauce. If it's homemade, it's called gravy.) When Mariella Esposito, owner of Fante's cookware shop on 9th Street, was asked if she could name some customers who buy pasta sauce, she exclaimed: "In South Philadelphia?
March 14, 2002 |
A diet rich in tomato sauce . . . and other tomato-based products . . . can lower the risk of prostate cancer, a new study says. - Associated Press Red gravy is concentrated, molten Italian-ness, a soulful symbol of family, identity, memory and mom. It's not fancy. In fact, tangy, spicy, satisfying tomato sauce - it's gravy here in the East, sauce nearly everywhere else - is dismissed as common and unsophisticated, especially as restaurant fare. But to Italian Americans, there's mojo in the boiling pot. "I think it is at the heart of what it means to be Italian in America," said food anthropologist Paola Sensi-Isolani of St. Mary's College of California in Moraga.
May 21, 1993 |
In Italian South Philly, two things rule: the heart and the stomach. Which is to say that the most important things in life are the family and food. As soon as the first Italian immigrants settled in South Philly (or "downtown," as locals call it), trattorias appeared, clustered primarily around the main intestinal tracts of Ninth Street and Passyunk Avenue. The exotic, ethnic food - gutsy, saucy, garlicky and, best of all, affordable - attracted adventurous eaters from all parts of the city - except South Philly.
June 3, 1995 |
St. Elizabeths Hospital is a sprawling facility for the mentally ill located almost in the shadow of Capitol Hill. It took in its first patient in 1855. Founded by Dorothea Dix, social reformer and mental health pioneer, the institution adhered to a view that was novel for its day and is sadly, if one takes Gingrich seriously, novel in ours. Dix argued that if we treat the mentally ill kindly and with dignity, some might recover. Gingrich ought take a few minutes out from hobnobbing with publishing magnates and $5,000-a-plate dinners and drop in on the young patients at St. Elizabeths.
November 19, 2009
Casseroles travel safely to Thanksgiving dinner in this two-quart covered dish. Fits neatly into a woven wood basket, and the pair would make a nice gift to leave with the host. For the gravy This lovely porcelain gravy boat is bordered with a garland of oak leaves, acorns and pumpkins - perfect for the annual autumnal feast. It holds 11 ounces of gravy, and it's microwavable and dishwasher safe.
January 2, 2000 |
What: Thermal syrup/gravy server Manufacturer: Progressive International Corp., Kent, Wash. Where: Kitchen Kapers Price: $9.99 Purpose: Keeps gravy, sauce or syrup warm during meals. The gravy boat that matches your china pattern may look pretty on the table, but it won't keep gravy warm during a long meal. Progressive International's lightweight plastic gravy pitcher has a Thermos-like, stainless-steel interior; a two-cup capacity; and a cap that screws on tightly so that gravy will stay hot even during a marathon dinner.
November 26, 2008
Last week's Inquirer Food section offered suggestions on wines for Thanksgiving and recipes for citrus roasted turkey, stuffed turkey breast, glazed brussels sprouts and pan gravy. Plus, read Craig LaBan's recipe for "The Incredible Barbecued Bird. " Go to and click on the Restaurants & Food link.