Mo Rocca Cooks With Grandma

He hits the kitchen with a new series on the Cooking Channel

Mo Rocca cooks with grandmothers in a new series (courtesy of Cooking Channel)

Starting Oct. 24 (8:30 p.m.) Mo Rocca will be traveling across the United States in search of authentic recipes in My Grandmother’s Ravioli, an original series. With 13 episodes getting ready to air on the Cooking Channel, the openly gay correspondent for CBS will be sharing stories from his own childhood – and the Sunday dinners he shared at his grandmother’s house. He’ll also be learning how to cook from other peoples’ families in each funny, food-friendly episode featuring everything from a Filipino grandma’s paella to an Italian twist on rabbit cacciatore.

“Mo’s storytelling through food is truly unique,” says Michael Smith of the Cooking Channel. “He enters each grandparent’s home with appreciation and a sense of humor and they welcome him with open arms.”

In the premiere episode, Rocca visits 76-year-old Ruth Teig in Scarsdale, N.Y., for a lesson in classic Jewish cuisine.   The menu includes meat-filled kreplach; a modernized version of homemade gefilte fish, and Teig’s famous “miracle” coffee cake. The grandmother also shares family anecdotes and Yiddish expressions and explains how, as a Holocaust survivor, she has saved many of the recipes that were passed to her as a child. The episode culminates in a traditional Shabbat dinner, prepared by both Teig and Rocca.

Throughout the season, he’ll also visit a Thai grandmother in Boston, an upstate New York firefighter who cooks for his firehouse and an Italian-American couple who have been married for more than 60 years.

“From Mary and her pierogi to Genevra and her peach ice cream to Gaetano and his shotgun – how else were we going to make venison stew – this has been an unforgettable journey,” says Rocca. “I’ll be honest, this show isn’t for everyone. If you hate grandmothers and home-cooked meals, you should not tune in.”