Everybody loves Italian food. It is the most popular cuisine all over the world. What makes it so good, however? Do the Italians just have it in their genes to be good cooks? Well, that might be the case, but the reality is that they have a culture that revolves around food that helps them bring out the best in ingredients.
Whether it is a simple margherita pizza, a hearty minestrone, or a grilled Florentine steak, the food just seems to always taste good. The respect for ingredients is at the center of it all. In this article, we will go over some lessons to be learned from how Italians deal with food that everybody should take on.
1 – Quality over quantity
When visitors come to Italy for the first time, they are usually underwhelmed by the small portion sizes. Many are used to huge portion sizes in the US and think that is a sign of value. Italians, instead, focus on the quality of the ingredients and not huge portions of mediocre food.
It doesn’t just apply to eating out either. When cooking at home, focus on freshness and artisanally made ingredients that will make all of your food taste better. For instance, instead of buying whatever meat is on sale, go for quality. Make a wagyu flank vegetable roll with farm stand vegetables and a great cut of beef. You’ll notice an enormous difference.
This is how to make food that tastes as good as it would in Italy even when you aren’t cooking Italian food.
2 – Eat local and seasonal
The biggest lesson to learn is to eat locally and when food is in season. The closer food is to you when it is picked means that it is going to be fresher when it arrives. This makes it much more nutritional and much tastier.
If you can’t buy the food you want locally, make sure it is at least in season. This means that instead of buying a strawberry in the middle of winter that has to come from another continent, buy it in the summer when strawberries are growing. They will taste the way strawberries taste.
Try to find a local farmer’s market where you can buy some local produce. You can even usually find locally raised and butchered meat that will taste miles away from what you get at the supermarket.
3 – Make it convivial
When people think of Italians eating, it never involves somebody sitting inside a car and eating a sandwich on their commute. Instead, it involves people sitting together at a table and sharing food.
This actually helps food taste good because it is always more enjoyable to eat with good company. Italians love to share food with family and friends. They think it’s a time to talk, laugh, and enjoy life.
Anybody can do this if you plan things well. It doesn’t have to be a complicated meal or a special occasion. Just invite some friends over when you’re cooking, or make sure your family is around at dinner time.
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