She grew up in an Orthodox Jewish family in South Jersey that went on the road for Passover and conducted seders in the back of a camper. Her mother collected coupons and micro-waved everything they ate. When she became a proto punk-rock rebellious teenager, her parents settled on an intervention strategy that sent her to live with the Hasidic community of Crown Heights in Brooklyn.
But while most teens were anesthetizing themselves solely with sex, drugs, and music, she found solace in food…seat-of-the-pants concoctions like snickers and potato chip casserole; Manischewitz wine spritzers; and hot dog, pasta and canned-pea casseroles that attracted other rebellious teenagers and created community.
Rambling from bar-tending on a Manhattan river boat to catering high-end parties to chef-ing in chic restaurants…often improvising and learning on the fly…she became one of what the New York Times has called “a new breed of rebel anti-caterer.”
Joining me in the studio today to talk about her upcoming memoir is Chef Rossi, who you may know her show from ow on WOMR, or her columns in The Huffington Post, and various publications.