How I learned to make Sunday sauce from my huge Jersey family

Feb 27, 2019 410

BY: Jeff Cioletti

I’m reaching way back to the earliest memories of my youth, to the first pasta accompaniment I ever knew and loved: Sunday sauce. Back then that’s not what we called it, at least in my family. It was just sauce. My immediate family wasn’t on the “gravy” train—which was odd because that’s what my maternal grandmother called it (confusing the hell out of my 4-year-old self).

My parents got married young and my mom moved in with my paternal grandparents when my dad was in Vietnam, so my mother ended up adopting my dad’s family’s Italian-American culinary lingo. People often claim that the gravy-versus-sauce thing is regional, but my family is proof that it’s not. Both my paternal and maternal grandparents grew up in Paterson, New Jersey.

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