Relationship: Child of im/migrant

“My mother came from Puerto Rico to NYC, maybe in the early 1960s. The pilon represents everything that she brought with her. That was it! From the time that she came here, the Latinos in this area was very few. She was the daughter of my grandmother and my grandfather. There were 27 kids, and she was the only one to come to NYC—the only one! So she didn’t have no family, and in that time there was barely any communication. It would take like a month before she could, you know like her mother, to contact her mother. It was so funny…She used to get the garlic and everything in the pilon. And she used to give it to us, to the girls, well there was three of us that was the oldest. So we used to have to take turns in mashing the garlic. She used to take a little bit of salt and mashing the garlic, make sure that everything was mushed so she could put it in her food. Cause for her, that was you know, the culture that she taught us. But, now technology of course, you know this is more than 50 years later. You know, we use blenders in our sofrito. We don’t mash it anymore in the pilon. I think of my mom every day, especially when I cook. When she passed away, part of me died with her. It’s never going to change. That’s the way it is, of course. She taught me to be a great cook. And I’m trying to teach—even though my kids are born and raised in NYC, to pass down the culture. So my youngest sons is going to learn to do pasteles, because everything else is going to be gone.”

Year: 1960

– Georgina Acevedo

Relationship:  Child of im/migrant Child of im/migrant