On my mom’s side of the family, God gave everyone a super power – cooking.
An aunt and uncle from the Pellegrini branch owned a small restaurant in Brooklyn until the mid 60’s. I eat there when I was a kid. They changed the menu selection every day and the food was delicious.
The DeScillio branch, my grand father Enrico, had a banquet hall in Yonkers N.Y.. It was named the Visuvio and was located on Broadway from the 1930’s through the 1950’s. A swanky place, although I was too young to have experienced it. I saw photographic examples of it’s swankiness- potted palm, white table cloths, raised band stand, and a press tin ceiling. It had about 200 seats and it was very popular.
Enrico DiSciullio’s son James, who will be ninety years old on Monday 4/13, had a place on South Broadway in Yonkers, Luigi’s, until the 1990’s. There was a mural of Naples Bay on a dining room wall, complete with a smoking Mt. Vesuvius in the distance. My uncle was an accommodating and entertaining restaurateur who served great food. Every visit there was a treat.
My place Dominic’s Restaurant, continued that tradition on the Archipelago island city of Peoria. Most of the food I served in that dining room was made from scratch using dishes and an approach to cooking I learned from my family, and a few great chefs I worked under in New York. Next to the dinning room was the Vesuvio Lounge. (Is there a pattern developing here with that volcano?) Guests went in there after dinner for martinis and live jazz.
Happy to say, the cooking super power has been handed down to my daughter. She is taking her collage classes on line, so we are seeing a lot of her these days. I also have the opportunity to watch her cook breakfast and lunch. Being a runner, she prepares dished largely from a health concision perspective. She incorporates current nutritional thinking into her dishes and I am learning a lot from her. Not to say I cook unhealthy food, but she does way more research on nutrition then I do. My approach is more intuitive, based on what has worked for me over time. But, you are never too old to learn something new and useful!
Below are two dishes I thought were tasty and well presented.
First is breakfast; Scrambled eggs on avocado toast seasoned with sea salt, red pepper flakes and garlic powder. Side of tart, Granny smith apples and natural peanut butter.
This second one is the lunch version of the breakfast plate; Sub the scrambled eggs for a sunny side up egg.
A while back, I went over to my Mom’s house for a visit. My brother was there too. The three of us ended up at her dinning room table while my brother was showing us something he found on the web. From my seat I saw my brother’s hand slip out from behind his laptop. I just happened to be holding my Iphone and snapped off this photo, before the hand slipped out of sight.
After I took the photo I realized that it was similar to the first photo I printed in high school photography class in 1977. That’s the same hand, just younger.
Why write about stamps? Well, stamps have many qualities that make them worthy of your time. There are three qualities I find unique for one piece of printed material to have.
One, they measure on a monetary scale the effort it takes a system to move an object of a particular size and weight from one point to another. In a way it is physics expressed in dollars and cents. Secondly, They open your mind to new ideas and new knowledge, like the index of a great encyclopedia might do. These little perforated paper squares commemorate great people, monumental events, amazing places, or revolutionary inventions and discoveries; many you may know little about. Finally, you get all this in a small interesting piece of artwork that is neat to look at.
2015 Bulgarian commemorative, Science and Technology Park. A nicely stylized illustration of the planets orbiting in the night sky. It is my understanding this issue has a circulation of twelve thousand stamps. A typical issue in the U.S. tops one hundred million stamps. However, the population of Bulgaria is nine million as compared to the population of U.S. being three hundred and twenty nine million.
Its’ really strange not to attending mass on Palm Sunday. I cannot recall a time when that has ever happened to me.
Our family has ‘attended’ mass watching a live stream from our church St. Marks. But it is not the same as being there in person. It is a richer experience when you pray and receive communion with your brothers and sister in Christ.
On a positive note our praying at dinner time has gotten longer and longer.