Arroz Con Salchichas

Myself and my grandmother
Myself and my grandmother

For me, the dishes that my grandmother, Cielo, prepares have always been something that is very special to me. As a little girl, I would sit on the small black stool at the corner of the kitchen and observe the entire process as she prepared Puerto Rican style, arroz con salchichas (rice with vienna sausages). Like myself, she learned how to make this dish along with many others from watching older members of her family, specifically, her aunt. Both of us knew that the main reason that I was in there was because I was nosey and hungry, but even then she always had open ears to whatever I wanted to express. It could be about my day at school, me complaining about my little brother or any random thought that popped into my head as I swung my legs and rocked back and forth from my chair. She also told her own stories of when she was a young girl and gave me advice. Throughout those years, sitting down and talking with her as she mixed the garlic, pepper, cilantro, and other spices to create the sofrito for seasoning the rice, helped to make our bond unbreakable. The same feelings of love and happiness in that kitchen were transferred into our meals. Her cooking, specifically her arroz con salchichas is distinct in that no one can make it taste as good and make me feel as good as hers can. And though I am now older and we see each other less frequently, when she cooks that meal the same adoration and warmth that I had as a little girl in that kitchen envelops me.

Place(s): Bronx, New York City, Puerto Rico, Binghamton
Year: 1950

– Korie Savage

Relationship:  Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more Great-grandchild of im/migrant or more