The Culture of Italian Food Essay Example


The culture of Italian food stretches back to the origins of the Roman Empire. The majority of their ingredients came from a land far away which they have conquered. A predominantly Mediterranean diet was the main food consumed. By the first century, chronicles began preserving Roman recipes of what was being eaten and how they were prepared. This ushered in the new period known as the Middle Ages, where new groups of people took charge and brought with them different types of spices, fruits, methods of cooking, and diets based on following their religion. It was during the Renaissance rebirth that a multitude of foods from all over the world was imported into Italy. Italian cuisine evolved using these new ingredients, creating both new and changing old recipes as they found their way into various regions. Eventually, the food shared as recipes, at festivals, with friends and relatives, became part of the rest of the world. Now, one can discover and try a taste, an exotic variation of distinctive flavors.

The importance of food was vital to life as well as its respect in all ways. Health was a concern of the people who chose to stick to a Mediterranean diet. This is a diet that contains vegetables, spices, olive oil, herbs, and others, which gives nourishment to the body during holidays like Saint Day and on an everyday basis. In contrast, for other holidays like Christmas, families tend to eat light since on Christmast they eat heavy foods such as pasta, meat, etc. others. It is usually mom who cooks in Italian culture since she takes great pride in her food, using ingredients from ancestors or making sure to use the freshest vegetables and herbs in a particular area, making the food taste particularly good. The things mom used were pasta, meat, olive oil, and sauce. Several-course meals are traditionally shared with the family since dried vegetables and cheese are both consumed. They would then have pasta and cheese before continuing with meat or seafood, such as fish, and then drink coffee and wine. Another important part of culture is lunchtime. During lunchtime, people can spend an hour eating at home. By cooking at home, it allows people to have a healthier diet because they're providing the family with healthy options. In this culture, people experience less unemployment as food provides energy, so they stay healthy and are more productive at work. 

The country is full of flavors, tastes, and the quality of the different regions.  Different varieties of food are seen to be eaten in each region because of access and what grows. Due to the climate, the soil, and the ingredients grown in the place, each region has a different blend of ingredients, and the locals would be required to incorporate their traditions into new recipes that combine fresh ingredients to make something delicious. A great variety of herbs and spices are used in all regions of the world, and there is a great deal of fish in the dishes. Typically, Italians cook simple dishes well known to their country, which is important because they're looking to capture the taste and all the flavors of a few quality ingredients to make a great meal. Food is their passion, as everything becomes simple when they cook. The effort and time to create something beautiful with lots of colors are evident in their cooking. Along with the food being cooked for a short time, a good meal can also be enjoyed for a few hours between breaks when families gather to share their experiences and reconnect with old memories. Ingredients can be an important part of Italian cultures such as olive oil, pasta, and wine. Olive oil was considered a source used to substitute fat from animals or even butter because it was considered healthier than a Mediterranean diet used in sauces, pasta, meat, and seafood. Pasta is considered a separate course usually eaten with just sauce. Considered an important part of the culture which is shared throughout Italy which was influenced by a product brought back by Marco Polo which was soon slowly eaten made out of durum wheat. This food comes in lots of varieties where each region eats pasta in its own style where people love to enjoy it slowly because of all the different tastes and flavors combined. 

It is said that the Italian and American food cultures are very different because the Italian food culture is about sharing simple ingredients with family and friends while the American food culture is about comfort foods that are not healthy. Fresh ingredients in season and those that are local to the region are what Italians eat because they tend to have more flavor and are tastier. Freshly grown fruits and vegetables are sold at farmer markets. Breakfast is considered to be a light meal similar to a snack. During lunch and dinner, they eat multiple courses and eat them in small portions so that they can digest everything properly. The weekends are a time for eating at home with others and interacting where few people go out. The food in America is also influenced by the cultures of the different countries and the territories they once occupied. A quarter of the people eat fast food each day here. People here enjoy fast food. American cheeses, meats, and sugar are the major foods consumed by Americans. As convenient as eating out at restaurants, ready-made food is just as convenient, considering nobody enjoys cooking since it takes a lot of time and would be very difficult given that they're classless and never learned to cook from their parents. Assuming individuals are paying for a meal, they want larger portions As for other countries, foods can be expensive so taking the family out to eat will cost more than they expected. This is similar to how 90 percent of Italians eat at home on Sunday.   Americans dislike breakfast most because it is a time-consuming meal, and they are always busy doing other things so they take out time to eat. During lunch, people are rushed because there is little time to eat, so they usually eat sandwiches and salads, and whatever they don't finish gets thrown away because they don't have time and the price is cheap so nobody wastes anything. It is not uncommon for many families to not have a good relationship where no one communicates with each other at dinner time. As seen health is never questioned when taking good care of yourself because the cost will be too much to worry about making the best choice of what to put in your body as others feel they have been doing what is right all the time without knowing the bad stuff.

The Italian food culture has always stuck to the true quality of simplicity using what you got with a few requirements to make a meal. Different cultures' influences on the Italian food has made the food eaten very unique with different dishes in each region all using local products to create their own traditional meals. These can be shared at festivals or with family to create memories with those who like good food as others.

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