Having the luck of been born in a Calabrese family I have learned from a young age what it means sharing the love for the family, the culture and the good food.
The family is everything, and without a family we wouldn’t feel completed. The culture is very important as it teaches us our roots and the love for our land. Food is essential, not only for survival but is the glue that keeps families together when sharing a meal.
From a very early age I remember getting together with all my cousins and uncles and aunties at Nonno Rocco and Nonna Rosaria house. It wasn’t a quite affair as we were 27 all together, but you could feel the love.
Nonno would sit at the head of the table, of course nonna’s spot was next to him on his right. In front of him he would have his glass of wine and a little jug with peperoncino ( chillies).
He would wait until the last one would sit, and only then he would let nonna serve him. ( Nonno was a good husband and most of the times he would wash the dishes for us)
Everyone would participate at the conversation, but us children knew that when it was an adults topic we would just listen without interrupting.
We would make from a simple meal a feast, and the secret ingredient? The love and respect we all had for each other.
I experienced the same in my parent’s home, and proudly I continued this tradition with my children.
Yes the family is definitely everything and the food that we share is the magic portion that we need to keep going
If I close my eyes I can’t still hear the voices, smell the food and feel the happiness I felt then.
Nonno and Nonna are no longer with us, but what they left is their legacy on the most important thing. La Famiglia ~ the Family