Eating Timpano With Stanley Tucci

Leah Bourne

img tucci 3 141259903371 Eating Timpano With Stanley TucciYes, Stanley Tucci has starred in some of our favorite movies (The Hunger Games, The Devil Wears Prada, and Easy A to name just a few) but did you also know that he is a seriously amazing chef? Tucci’s foodie legend has been on the rise since he wrote, starred, and directed 1996’s Big Night, a movie about two brothers who operate an Italian restaurant in New Jersey set in the 1950s. His offscreen foodie persona is also one of legend—at his Westchester home Tucci owns a mammoth stone pizza oven, where dinner parties are par for the course. When he was getting ready to star in Julie & Julia with Meryl Streep, Tucci told Streep they had to cook together to prepare.
The actor’s love of cooking comes from grandmother, Concetta Tropiano, a tradition that Tucci has carried on by sharing family recipes in a series of cookbooks, his latest, The Tucci Cookbook, was published last year. The book combines Northern and Southern Italian dishes from both sides of his family, and includes wine pairings.
In celebration of the recipes in the book, Tucci, alongside family, hosted a dinner at Soho House prepared by Andrea Cavaliere and German Lucarelli, benefiting the Food Bank For New York City. “We are eating very well tonight because of my family,” Tucci said, acknowledging the big role that his family had in crafting the recipes in the book. Items served for dinner included clams baked on the half shell, Venetian seafood salad and stuffed artichokes paired with Grey Good Cherry Noir cocktails and Italian wines.
The centerpiece of the meal was timpano, an enormous dough-encased drum of ziti, salami, provolone, eggs, and tomato sauce that serves 16. The Tucci family makes one each Christmas and the dish starred in Big Night, after which the actor was constantly asked for the recipe. “It is an ancient dish,” Tucci explained. “It was cooked many years ago, but it’s still good.” The dish hails from Calabria, Italy, where members of the Tucci hail from. Adding to the family affair of the event, Stanley Tucci Sr. (pictured right) cut slices (and generous ones) for guests.
Tucci’s greatest hope for the cookbook is that the recipes in it will be handed down to the next generation of his family.  “That was the impetus for the book,” he shard. “Fortunately all my kids love food.”
img tucci 1 141114323044 Eating Timpano With Stanley Tucci