The name DeMutis is familiar to Phoenixville and the revitalization of the area.
Manny is the son of Emanuel and Betsy DeMutis. Today along with his dad and two sisters — Dodi and Anne — are what is known as the DeMutis Group.
In the early 2000s, the group was loosely formed as a family business. Individually and separately they develop and manager properties. The group is still in full force. But has taken a step back to allow for a new force to direct the town.
Manny and his wife Kate have three daughters — Hope, Paige and Ava. Kate is a professor of nursing along with being a nurse practioner.
Manny told me as each girl graduates from college — “their room at home will be turned in a sewing room. And no one even sews." It seems to me this means once out of school they are on their own.
His grandfather was also known as Manny. He came to the United States from Italy — starting out as a quarry worker. Grandfather Manny opened a barber shop in the 100 block of Bridge Street. The shop became a mainstay to the downtown area.
The DeMutis family is very close. Before and after the death of Betsy, the family gather for “Tuesday Dinners” most Tuesdays.
Speaking about close family ties, earlier this year Hope had an opportunity to go to Florence Italy for her studies. So, Manny, Kate and her two sisters made the two-week trip.
For a long time, Manny tried to search his family ancestry without success. Until one day while visiting the family gravesite he realized DeMutis was spelled DeMutiis. This one fact opened the door.
Going through Ellis Island Ancestry he located a cousin in Volturino, Italy. This small village has approximately 2,000 residents.
For three days, the American DeMutis family and a number of DeMutiis family members got to know and enjoy each other. In fact, this coming Christmas (2019), Manny is expecting 10 of them for a family reunion at his home.
Where ALL the family can meet each other. Christmas Eve falls on a “Tuesday Dinner” night — what a celebration that is going to be. This connection is very important to the DeMutis Family. I hope Manny does not forget that he invited me to dinner during their stay.
Manny is an excellent cook, actually a foodie. He like to cook in bulk. This recipe is for 5 pounds of meat. Here is his recipe for meatballs and marinara sauce.
MANNY’S MEATBALLS* & MARINARA SAUCE
4 lbs. 80/20 ground beef family pack - approximately
1 lb. sweet Italian sausage
16 oz. ricotta
8 oz. of parmesan
8 oz. of Romano
large yellow onion
plain bread crumbs
bunch of wide leaf parsley diced
basil fresh or dried
salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder& red crushed pepper
milk to soak mixture
Preheat oven to 325-degrees. Combine all of above ingredients & form meatballs & place on baking sheet(s). Bake 20-25 minutes.
On a baking sheet spread ground beef evenly. Take sausage out of case spread it on top. Spread ricotta evenly. Coat with all cheeses. Coat with bread crumbs. Liberally coat with all spices and herbs. Make a hole in the middle of the mixture. Fill hole with eggs and milk. By hand thoroughly mix until all ingredients are evenly distributed. Bake 20 to 25 minutes.
*Mixture makes approximately 30 meatballs - depending on the size you make them.
6 (14 oz) cans of tomato puree
diced carrots, celery, onions cup each
5 cloves of minced garlic
bunch of parsley
salt, pepper & red crushed pepper – to taste
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
Over medium high heat in a large stockpot place olive oil
Sauté carrots, onions, celery and garlic until translucent
Add tomato puree Add basil and entire bunch of parsley
Salt, pepper and red crushed to taste. Simmer for 3 hours.
Contract columnist Bette at banjack303.verizon.net. Search YouTube – with BetteBanjack as well as phoenixvillenews.com (search bar Banjack). She can be found on Facebook. Her book “2 Cups of Yesterday” can be found at the Gateway Pharmacy or by contacting her directly.