It is October, and you know what that means! Sweaters, fall leaves, apple cider, pumpkins, and witches! Don’t worry, we will be talking about a nice witch in today’s session of what, guys?? 




That’s right, we are going to Cook the Book – well, not really. Here at Cook the Book, we make a recipe based on a book! For October, we will be cooking a dish based on the classic tale by Tomie de Paola, “Strega Nona.” 

But before we begin, what should we do first? 

That’s right! We’ll clean our kitchen work area, gather our materials, and wash our hands! Geez, it’s like you’ve cooked a book before. Now, let us begin! 

Strega Nona is the local witch in the town of Calabria, where she helps girls find their husbands, cure headaches, and get rid of warts. She enjoys helping people, but she is getting old, emphasizing the meaning of her name, “Grandma Witch.”

Strega Nona posts a help-wanted ad in the town square, where Big Anthony, a man who doesn’t pay much attention, sees it and goes to Strega Nona to work. She has him clean the house and tend to the animals. One day, Big Anthony catches Strega Nona conducting one of her spells.

“Bubble, bubble, pasta pot, 

Boil me some pasta, nice and hot, 

I’m hungry, and it’s time to sup, 

Boil enough pasta to fill me up.”

MMM…. speaking of pasta, let me tell you what we will need for our recipe!

We will be making shrimp scampi (my favorite!)

We will need: 

  • Pasta (of your choice)
  • Shrimp (as much as you like)
  • Garlic
  • White Onions
  • Parmesan
  • Butter
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Old Bay (for some MD spice!)

I personally use whole wheat pasta and add spinach and mushroom for some extra pizzazz, but it is all up to you. 

When the noodles are halfway done, we will put the butter in the pan and add garlic to it. Once you start smelling the garlic, add the onion (or other veggies) and let them cook. After they have cooked, you can add the shrimp until they turn from blue/gray to red. While we wait for the pasta to finish, let’s check in on Strega Nona and Big Anthony in Calabria. 

Uh, oh! 

Big Anthony didn’t see Strega Nona blow her magic pasta pot three kisses. Well, I hope nothing bad happens because of that … 

Oh well! I know what, we can blow three kisses too! 

Your delicious shrimp scampi!

Thank you so much for tuning into Cook the Book with me, Ms. Kate, today, and we will see you soon!

To check out “Strega Nona” by Tomie dePaola, click here for our catalog.