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Mary Taylor Simeti

Autor(a) de On Persephone's Island: A Sicilian Journal

6+ Works 729 Membros 19 Reviews

About the Author

Mary Taylor Simeti, an American writer who has lived in Sicily for almost forty years, is the author of On Persephone's Island, Pomp and Sustenance, and Bitter Almonds
Image credit: Mary Taylor Simeti (on the right) & Maria Grammatico (co-authors of Bitter Almonds)

Obras de Mary Taylor Simeti

Associated Works

A Taste of Ancient Rome (1986) — Prefácio, algumas edições172 cópias
Travelers' Tales ITALY : True Stories (1998) — Contribuinte — 112 cópias


Conhecimento Comum



This was a good book to read before our trip to Sicily.
mykl-s | outras 4 resenhas | Apr 2, 2023 |
This is an eye-opening personal history of a girl who grew up in a convent on Sicily after her mother realised that she couldn’t afford to bring her and sister, Angela up after their father passed on so they were passed to the orphanage, Istituto San Carlo. Sicily at the time was just beginning a slow recovery after the war and life there was tough, people scratched a living and there was a high rate of mortality too.

In this place, she learnt the secrets of the sweets that were prepared for the numerous religious festivals. They would rise before dawn to begin the day’s work and spend hours each day beating a rolling the sugar and almond mix to make the exquisite pastries. These would be sold to the general public through a small grille in the wall of San Carlo.

The skills that she learnt whilst there were to stand her in good stead when she emerged at the age of 22. She set up her own shop selling these pastries as well as cakes, biscotti and lots of other sweet delights. The reputation of the pasticceria grew and people flocked to buy the wares. Mary Taylor Simeti was one of those customers and as they became friends she realised that Maria Grammatico had a unique story to tell

She has a hard but simple life and this is an insight into a Sicily that was long gone. As a plus, half of the book is a wonderful collection of recipes too which made me very hungry reading them. I am off to Sicily soon and whilst we might not make it here, I am hoping to try some of the wonderful things found in a pasticceria.
… (mais)
PDCRead | outras 2 resenhas | Apr 6, 2020 |
A recipe book with long, wonderfully helpful introductions to the various categories of Sicilian food. I recommend reading it together with Simeti's companion book on Sicily On Persephone's Island: A Sicilian Journal. (Read my review of both books there.)

I don't envision myself actually making any of these dishes (but then, who knows?), but I certainly know what I am going to order on my next visit to Sicily's many wonderful restaurants. Heartily recommended as reading material for any planned trip to Sicily.… (mais)
pbjwelch | outras 7 resenhas | Jul 25, 2017 |


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