Joe Scaravella likens his creation of Enoteca Maria to curating art in a museum, but instead he is presenting authentic Italian food, by ingeniously curating Italian “nonne”. Anyone who has had a meal at the restaurant, Enoteca Maria, is grateful they have a place to go to get authentic Italian food, like their grandmothers cooked for them when they were young.
The food at Enoteca Maria is really prepared by Italian grandmothers, who learned their recipes from their Italian mothers and grandmothers. These grandmothers, or “Nonne”, bring their passion for the food and recipes of their particular region in Italy, and with over 10 grandmothers available to cook, there is a different chef, and a different menu every night.
I don’t know anyone who doesn’t dream of their mother’s or grandmother’s cooking. As we watch newer chefs recreate Italian food, Joe and his grandmother chefs at Enoteca Maria intend to make sure that the original recipes and cooking secrets of the food of Italy are preserved.
Appropriately tucked away on a little street in Staten Island’s St George Historic District, Enoteca Maria is frequented by New Yorkers and tourists alike, who are looking for an authentic Italian meal, and a great dining experience. Open 3:00pm for small plates, and Dinner from 4:30pm until the last person leaves, the restaurant provides the ultimate Italian experience. A block from the Staten Island Ferry, it makes a great date night outing or tourist destination from Manhattan.
Here are some of the recipes from the Italian Nonnas of Enoteca Maria!
Bon Cuisine & Bon Appétit,
Rosa Turano’s Osso Buco from the Veneto Region
Rosa Turano was born in Schio, Province of Vincenza, in the Veneto Region of Italy. She cooks one day a week usually, and then spends the rest of her time being a mother to her children and a grandmother to her grandson. “I love cooking, and wish I could do it more, but they are my priority. “ This is her children’s favorite, her recipe for Osso Buco. (Rosa’s Osso Buco is a must have at Enoteca Maria!)
“I don’t know the exact quantities because all my cooking is done as I was taught a little of this, a pinch of that.” – Rosa Turano
I am glad she made her Osso Bicco and measured each amount to give us the recipe!
• 8 pieces of veal shanks
• All purpose flour
• ½ cup oil and ½ stick of butter
• one cup of dry white wine
• 3 cups veal or chicken stock
• two lemons for zest
• 3 tbs Italian parley
• 3 large cloves of garlic sliced thin
• salt and pepper
1. Pat dry the veal shanks, season with salt and ground pepper, dredge in flour shaking off the excess.
2. In a large pot heat olive oil and butter until smoking, add veal shanks and brown on both sides. Add white wine and reduce liquid , turning half way thru. Add veal stock (or chicken) bring to a boil and reduce heat to low, cover pan and simmer until the meat is falling off the bone.
* Every 15 minutes turn shanks and add more stock if necessary. The cooking liquid
should always be about 3/4 the way up the shank.
3. At the last few minutes of cooking add lemon zest in slivers, very thinly sliced garlic and chopped Italian parsley.
“I usually serve this with mashed potatoes and when I serve it I pour the juices and sauce from the pot over the shanks and potatoes.”
Rosaria Vigorito’s Pizelle from Abruzzi Region
Rosario is from the Abruzzi Region of Italy. She has been cooking for Enoteca Maria for 4 years, and has two grandchildren.
“My grandchildren are my life! I am sharing a typical dessert you will find in Abruzzo.” – Rosaria Vigorito
- 6 eggs
- 3/4 c. sugar
- Pinch of salt
- 1 tsp. pure anise extract
- 3/4 c. oil
- 2 1/2 c. flour
- 2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1. In a large bowl, beat eggs and sugar until thick.
2. Stir in the oil and anise.
3. Sift together the flour and baking powder, and blend into the batter until smooth.
4. Heat the pizzelle iron, and spray with Pam or with oil.
5. Drop about one tablespoon of batter onto each center of the iron. You may need to experiment with the amount of batter and baking time depending on the iron. Cook for 20 to 45 seconds, or until steam is no longer coming out of the iron. Carefully remove cookies from the iron. Cool completely before storing in an airtight container.
Veal alla Christina (Serves 4)
Christina Carozza was born in San Guisrppe Iato, just south of Palermo on the Northern coast of Sicily. When, she was young, her family moved to Bergamo, north of Milan, in the province of Lombardia. This is where she learned to cook from her mother, grandmother, and aunt.
• 8 Veal Cutlets
• 1 cup flour for dredging
• 1/2 stick butter
• 4 tbsp olive oil
• 2 cloves garlic, chopped
• 1 cup porcini mushrooms
• 8 slices prosciutto, thin sliced
• 1/4 cup white wine
• Salt and pepper
• Fresh parsley
1. Dredge veal cutlets in flour
2. Sauté in butter and oil
3. Set veal aside
4. In same pan that was used for veal sauté garlic, then add and sauté mushrooms
5. Add white wine to pan
6. Return veal to pan
7. Add prosciutto over veal cutlets
8. Season with salt and pepper
9. Simmer for five minutes. Add parsley and serve.
Enoteca Maria is open Wednesdays through Sundays year round, 3:00pm for small plates, and 4:00pm for dinner, until “the last person has left”. They are closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve. *NOTE: Enoteca Maria is a “cash only” restaurant.
For reservations or private parties call (718) 447-2777 or email firstname.lastname@example.org