Everyone (secretly) wants to be Italian, and here’s why…

Rece Ramsey and Talia Mongelluzo

As someone who is surrounded by traditional dishes originating from the islands of the Philippines, trying new foods from different cultures around the world is something that I always love. From appetizers of Bruschetta to homemade Italian lasagna, Talia Mongelluzzo’s mother knows how to do it all. With family roots set in Serramonacesca, Italy, Teresa Mongelluzo has stuck to the delicious and traditional values of good authentic Italian food. 

Rece Ramsey, Staff Writer
Teresa Marie Mongelluzo

Teresa Marie Mongelluzzo, with strong Mucci roots, carries the torch of traditional Italian food from their secret family recipe book only known to other members of the family. 

At the Mongelluzzo home, Mrs. Mongelluzzo was preparing me a night of Italian delights. While waiting for the main course munching on Bruschetta, I was able to admire her elegant cooking skills. This appetizer was an amazing starter to the night of mouthwatering food, or cibo as they say in Italy. 

Following appetizers came the main event of the evening at the Mongelluzo household – dinner. Mrs. Mongelluzo had prepared homemade lasagna, creamy fettuccini, salad mixed well with vinegar and olive oil, and of course, garlic bread! The exquisite array of flavors was most certainly worth the carb load I consumed. 

Once dinner was settled, I was introduced to a surprisingly divine Italian dessert that I was not able to keep my hands off. The light and crispy Italian cookies, pizzelles, were an excellent cherry on top of the evening. Looking at the cookies in detail, the scrumptious desserts were imprinted gorgeously with beautiful designs that made them even more appealing. 

Italian food is a staple in our community here in the city of Latrobe. For me, personally, it was always sticking with my family’s traditional Filipino dishes. However, Chef Teresa Marie Mongelluzo and her Italian apron were able to further my cultural palate. So I guess it is true- everyone (secretly) wants to be Italian!