It’s not luck, it is just by chance that I have ended up with an Italian “nonna” or grandma that likes to give us nice things when we visit. By nice things I mean:
-Eggs from her chickens.
-The chickens (frozen, and oh so tasty when fried in the skillet)
-Tomato sauce from the summer harvest, with basil.
-Seasonal fruits and vegetables (this time, persimmons, pomegranates, beans and frozen peas from the summer)
-Ragu for pasta.
Lucky, yes. It is the dream of many guys from the U.S. to be able to go to a real Italian grandma for good things. The best part is the pleasure that you can see in her eyes giving them to us. We don’t make much money at the moment but we are quite happy. But nothing really makes us happier than coming back to our apartment with a trunk full of food. It saves us money for sure, but apart from that, it makes us feel good, physically and mentally. Part of the charm for me is that it reminds me of growing up in the mid-west of the U.S. and helping my mom can green beans in the summertime. I hated picking the ends off of them because it was boring and laborious, but I always appreciated the fact that we had green beans in the winter. I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was eating local and seasonal, and it wasn’t because it was hip or fashionable, but because that was what we had. It’s the same with grandma here, it’s what she has, so it’s what she eats, naturally, but also what she can give. She doesn’t fill our bellies with sweets, processed cakes, etc. but with real food, that comes from her hands, from the earth around her house and always has.