Italy. Maybe it’s the fantasy, maybe it’s the visions I’ve always held about being here and eating myself into a bliss induced coma, or maybe… just maybe, Italians do good things by food, but in the last week that I’ve been here in Italy, every single meal I’ve had here has been amazing.
Italian cuisine is simple, whole, fresh. One of the things I’ve read about and am witnessing here is that ingredients are honored for what they are, whole. You don’t need to add too much… just let each ingredient shine and speak for itself.
The other morning I had an omelet with smoked cheese and a paper thin sliver of prosciutto. I almost cried when I put the first bite into my mouth. This is not an exaggeration. I literally felt a wave of emotion come over me over the pleasure of flavor in my mouth. And it was the simplest thing. Nothing fancy on the plate, nothing seemingly fancy going on with the omelet. Just eggs, prosciutto and really good cheese.
What I’m experiencing here is that a deep practice in pleasure and the making of food, inform one another. Life is meant to be savored, so it follows that food? Should be worthy of such a practice. It’s a beautiful thing. And the biggest lesson of all? To achieve that? You don’t have to make things complicated. 3-5 ingredients can make a phenomenal varied meal.
Being gluten free here is easier than first imagined as well The whole of Italy is aware of what this is, and even at restaurants that don’t offer official gluten free pasta or bread, there seems to be, so far, enough vegetable dishes to not miss the glorious pasta.
Oh… and did I fail to mention the coffee? Forgive me. But yes. The COFFEE. No words.
Below a bit of my dining. Enjoy. There will be more to come, especially as I get closer to attending the Slow Food International Terra Madre conference!