… I was so busy stuffing my face I forgot to take a picture of the dish. I’m really sorry. Here’s a pic I borrowed from D’Angelo’s site:
Dish 98: Ziti and Meatballs at D’Angelo’s, 20th and Manning, http://www.dangeloristorante.com
Mom and Dad would order in a plain pizza from Mario’s (which was then John’s, which was then Mario’s again) on Friday nights, if Brian and I behaved well. Miss Grawehr would take us to Cousin’s for mozzarella sticks if we did well in class. In middle school, the PTA organized Ziti Wednesdays, and the lunch room would be silent as every student happily crammed his face with pasta and butter and meatballs. In high school, we all stayed on campus on Thursdays for the special, calzones. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday, we headed to Pizza Factory.
And then I moved to Pennsylvania, where plain pizza has no cheese and tomato gravy contains sugar. And I barely ate pasta, pizza, ziti, calzone, meatballs, or mozzarella sticks for four years.
The fast can end.
I’m being melodramatic. I have had some Italian food in the past four years, and some was fantastic (Vinny T’s in Wynnewood, L’Angolo in South Philly, Osteria, Melograno) but today was the first time that I was transported home, to nights spent babysitting at a certain tan house in Cobblestone Crossing, jogging to open the door for the delivery man, smelling the fresh, hot, oily tomatoeyness oozing from every crack in the greasy paper bag, unwrapping the foil to reveal soft rolls to soak up the excess sauce and basil and parm. The portions were so big you always saved half for tomorrow. Today I couldn’t resist. I wolfed the ziti down hungrily, like we used to after vacations—“shore pizza” we’d say, “it’s no good. Their water isn’t any good. The crust is all strange. The sauce is all sweet. It’s just no good.” Oh, but this was good. This was really good. I’m so full right now.
Tags: babysitting, cousin's, d'angelo's, growing up, italian, john's, l'angolo, mario's, meatballs, melograno, mozzarella sticks, osteria, rittenhouse, shore pizza, south philly, spaghetti, tomato gravy, vinny t's, ziti