While best known for flipping tables on the first season of Real Housewives of New Jersey, Towaco resident Teresa Giudice (pronounced judy-chay, not jew-dice; “Get it right!” she says) is more focused these days on what she’s putting on the table. Her new cookbook, Fabulicious! Teresa’s Italian Family Cookbook (Running Press), the follow-up to her best-selling Skinny Italian, arrives in stores this month.
“I had to write Fabulicious! so that I could share more of my family’s traditional authentic Italian recipes,” Giudice tells New Jersey Monthly. “And who doesn’t like Italian food?”
Along with 30-minute meals, entertaining for a crowd and desserts, her focus is still on healthy recipes—and authenticity.
“Forget Jersey Shore—it’s the Olive Garden that gives us Italians a bad name,” she says. That’s why she’s offering an alternative. “If you eat home-cooked, fresh, authentic Italian food, you can have your pasta and your skinny jeans, too,” she reassures. For the uninitiated, Giudice offers lessons on the importance of extra-virgin olive oil, how to fire-roast peppers at home and proper Italian pronunciation (famiglia = fah-MEAL-ya).
The cookbook resembles a family scrapbook, albeit one laced with innuendo—as suggested by recipe names like Quickie Tomato Sauce, Joe’s Juicy Meatballs and Sexy Chick Eggless Pasta. Die-hard Real Housewives fans will drool over the photos, family gossip and typical Giudice banter. “Buckle up, Baby Dolls. This is not your mama’s cookbook,” she declares.
Her four adorable daughters, Gia, Gabriella, Milania and Audriana, have their own Giudice Girls Gone Wild section. But, Giudice warns, “If you just thought about a certain practically pornographic video series, then shame on you!” Instead, the section is complete with the girls’ favorite recipes and how to count to 10 in Italian with Miss Milania. “There’s no such thing as too many kid cooks in my kitchen,” she adds.
And despite rumors of a divorce, Giudice’s husband, Joe, has a conspicuous presence throughout the pages, from the many photographs to his epicurean Juicy Bits from Joe. “You can’t believe everything you read,” insists Giudice. “If anything, cooking has brought us closer together, and we’re in the process of looking for a location to open up a restaurant.”
As to the where and when, we’ll have to tune in to season three to see what heats up next. In the meantime, this cookbook is a fun diversion—and one that you don’t have to be a Real Housewives fan to digest.
Molly Tully is the editor of NJM sister publication New Jersey Bride. She admits to a fascination with Real Housewives.Click here to leave a comment