As you may know, Italians love to eat. We love food. I look at some of my mom's recipes that were passed down to her and I just cannot believe the work that went into preparing it. Fast and easy was not the norm back in the day. Women stayed home, would wake up have their espresso and a little bite and the chores began. They would start their meals from the morning by preparing the tomato sauce, or making homemade pasta. In a later segment I will post on how my mom makes pasta e fagioli (pasta and beans). Pasta e fagioli is another comfort Italian dish which is so delicious but labor intensive. But the joy that my mother had when making the pasta was priceless. She was making it with love. She turns on her Italian music and away she goes.
So when all this delicious food is served and thoroughly enjoyed, we cap off our meal with a nice espresso. It's an automatic given. We finish our meal, clear the table and the espresso machine is on the burner.
Italians do not serve dessert after a meal. Not usually. My mom would always prepare a platter of fruit, serve the coffee and that was it. So sugary indulgences. That was saved for special occasions. My dad likes to add a little Sambuca to his espresso for an extra punch. It adds a nice, sweet, anise taste to tone down the bitterness of the espresso coffee.
It just seems like modern life is so hectic. We wake up, rush to work, come home and rush to make something to eat. I know for myself, I really need to take it down a notch. Just to relax and enjoy the simple things in life like my parents do. It's so hard to do, but I am practicing one day at a time.