The Girl behind the Philly


Photo: Revati Doshi

About the "Girl" behind the Philly:

I’m beyond thrilled to share my passion for food with you!! This love affair goes back 30+ years ago in my mother’s kitchen. Coming from an Italian background, food was a main character at every event for our family. Birthdays, funerals, or even just a Wednesday night, everything surrounded around the food. To this day I can still tell you that if my grandfather was visiting, you had to have biscotti or Stella D’oro on hand. If it was my sister’s birthday, she wanted meatloaf in au jus with mashed potatoes and peas (gag). If my aunts and uncles were around, pasta fagioli was mandatory.

Food invokes specific feelings in all of us. Aromas and flavors can take you back to a familiar place or particular memory. For me, it effortlessly creates automatic associations within my psyche. I may not remember what my uncle was wearing when he came to visit when I was five, but I recall him finding a curtain ring in his bowl of escarole soup because the china was stored in the curio cabinet and my mother had absentmindedly tucked it in there one day. I can’t tell you what my grandfather’s house looked like but I know he sent us oranges every year from Florida for as long as I can remember. I have zero recollection of a single item in my Easter basket (that’s not true, I remember getting my first Michael Jackson tape), but I can still see the chocolate eggs with neon frosting that my mom painstakingly constructed with the neighbor down the street annually. I have no idea why as a young girl my entire family and extended family was in Las Vegas together, but I specifically remember sitting at the long table of the Brazilian steakhouse with skewers of sizzling meat and men eager to carve a slice right on to our plates. “As much as I want?!” And finally, I don’t recall the size or color of the pot but I know the distressed and slightly burned wooden spoon my mother used to make a pot of gravy and I can tell you that I burnt my mouth every time I broke off a piece of bread to dunk in, just for a taste.

I’m not a pro. I have zero training and never worked in a restaurant. I had a small stint as hostess at an ice cream shop as a teenager, and 6-months in the back-office for a catering company. My passion comes from within. It is deep-rooted and intertwined through every nook and cranny of my being. I hope you receive this site from the place in which it was intended: as an extension of myself and something I love.

          xx  Kass/PFG