Cast Blog: #RHONJ

Teresa's '50 Shades of Black & Blue'

Teresa reveals her potential memoir title.

50 Shades of Black & Blue
I'm thinking of writing a new book about my life (since apparently writing four cookbooks doesn't count...). I'm going to call it 50 Shades of Black & Blue.
In it, my own family members and friends I've had for 10 years turn on me. They hate me and hate on me like it's their full time job. They sit around every day talking about me non-stop, even when I'm not there. They talk and talk and talk some more about how obsessed I am with them. They bang their hands and wave napkins and cackle about how crazy I am.

Meanwhile across town, people with cute 1950s names -- Penny, Jan -- that own salons come up to me saying they want to carry Milania Hair Care. Of course, I listen. Then they start talking trash about my sister-in-law. Of course, I stop listening. I get up and leave. Doesn't matter though, because I am invisible now.My family hears about the rumors and blames me. I am to blame for everything: when their ex-bosses and ex-boyfriends talk about them, when their friends stop liking them, when their house and records and books don't sell. It is all my fault. Along with eclipses and the economy.

It does hurt that my family always assumes the worst of me. It hurts when they call me names. It hurts when I see tabloids with the "inside scoop" on my parents, my in-laws, and my marriage. But what can I do? Nothing because it's only fiction. Right?
My most recent book Fabulicious! On the Grill is definitely nonfiction and full of fun. And real words, not just recipes. Here's the one I used tonight when I couldn't stand watching TV anymore. If you want more, pick up a copy at your local bookstore or Amazon: Peach “Sangria”
Makes 6 servings

“Vintage” Italians, as I like to call my parents’ generation, follow most meals like this: they slice fresh peaches, put them in a glass, pour red wine over the top, and then spend the rest of the evening spearing out the fruit with the tip of a knife. They eat, drink, eat, drink, repeat. I turned their tradition into an Italian “sangria” by mixing peaches with sugar in a pitcher (the sugar helps the peaches release some juice) and then adding the wine. While my parents like it room temperature, I prefer it chilled.
2 ripe peaches, pitted and cut into 1/2 inch slices
2 tablespoons sugar
1 (750-ml) bottle fruity red wine, such as merlot
1. Combine the peaches and sugar in a glass pitcher. Let stand at room temperature about 1 hour, or until the peaches give off some juices.
2. Pour in the red wine and stir well. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours and up to 8 hours.
3. Pour into wine glasses, making sure that each glass gets some peaches. Serve chilled.All of my books are fun actually. When I first did Skinny Italian I wanted to make sure it was more than just recipes, that it was full of stories and food facts and history too. My favorite thing is when people come up to me and tell me they read my books cover to cover. I tell about how Joe and I met (when I was a baby!), how we've stayed married 13 years (lots of sex, lots of good homemade food!), how I learned to cook, my kitchen explosions, how I got my name, which pasta was known for strangling priests, how my parents and in-laws met in Italy. I tell you which foods you can (and can't!) use in the bathtub, which food will put you in the mood (watermelon is like the Viagra of fruit! I give a recipe for Watermelon Granita in Fabulicious: On the Grill. You're welcome.), and Joe chimes in with his own "Juciy Bits from Joe" about making wine and what "Manzo" really means.
I know most of you know this already, but it sounds like some of my own family members haven't read my books, so here's a quick summary:
Skinny Italian ( is all about the cornerstones of healthy, authentic, Italian cuisine. I teach you how to make six different tomato sauces from scratch, how to choose and use the right olive oil, and how to love food, love eating, and still love your body afterward. It includes full nutritional information for each recipe.
Fabulicious: Teresa's Italian Family Cookbook ( is all about preparing, serving, and eating meals with the ones you love. My girls even take over the book and write one of the chapters!Each recipe in Fabulicious! Fast & Fit: Teresa's Low-Fat, Super-Easy Italian Recipes ( uses 10 easy-to-find, inexpensive ingredients or less or can go from start-to-stove in 15 minutes. Everything is heart-healthy and includes full nutritional information.
And with Fabulicious! On The Grill: Teresa's Smoking Hot Backyard Recipes, I bring my signature cooking style -- easy, no-fuss Italian cooking -- to the grill with 70 new recipes (including more than one "happy ending.")
I hope you all had a great 4th of July! I enjoyed it with my family at the shore. We're all so thankful that we live in this wonderful country, and a special thank you to all the veterans and service men and women and their families for helping keep it that way!
Tanti Baci,
Teresa xx

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Amber Marchese dishes on her first reunion and why Dina Manzo confuses her.

Hello Housewife friends!  Welcome to the jungle baby! My first reunion was a wild ride. Call me sick and twisted, but I had an unbelievable time at the reunion when most, I have been warned, dread it. I felt like it was “The Great Purge” and when I went home I was felt relieved of any built up tension. I don’t care if anyone has a grudge against me, my slate is clean and I harbor no ill feelings towards anyone. I love to argue my point, and I truly stood by all of my convictions this season, so I was ready to say exactly what was on my mind, and then some. 

I know the twins and I went at one another pretty hard, but that is what the reunion is all about. It is an opportunity to get it all out and potentially understand one another's position better. Then we can each make our own decisions as to where we want to go with our relationships. I am very much the type of person that can say some of the meanest things and sling mud, but hug it out at the end forgetting anything negative that was said. It just rolls off my back. I actually think it is healthier to say what needs to be said, and then move on.

One thing I did question after the reunion was if Dina actually has a heart or if I should start calling her the Tin Man. I actually have not figured her out yet. Is she really just a coldhearted bitch, or has she been hurt so many times that she has become warped and jaded. I feel I don’t owe anyone any reason as to why I call cancer “the cancer,” but I will give it once more anyhow. “The cancer” is “the monster” to me. It is a way for me to take away its power and to minimize it. “It” destroys lives, so “it” does not deserve a name. It is just “the cancer” -- it was “the monster” or “the dragon.” Although Dina claims to have an understanding of how devastating cancer is to a family, her actions and blatant lack of empathy proves otherwise.

In addition, I did not think it was appropriate for me to interject into family quarrels at the reunion; however, this is something that I feel strongly about. I have met Jaqueline and I have spoken to her on many occasions. In the very short time that I have gotten to know Jaqueline, I know and have empathy with the struggles she has caring for Nicholas. I felt that Dina’s interpretation of her nephew was callous and completely out of touch with reality. The only thing that keeps playing in my mind is, "You know nothing John Snow."  No, thank God, he is not hooked up to machines with cancer; however, what the Laurita family goes through is extremely difficult on a day to day basis that will continue on for a lifetime. It is emotionally and financially devastating. Although, Dina "visits" children with cancer, at the end of her visit she gets to go home, leaving it behind and goes on with her daily life. Since Dina does work with children with cancer, I pray that she can abstain from a self-absorbed lifestyle and become a loving, involved aunt. 

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