It is now definitely recognized worldwide that the Mediterranean diet has incredible positive effects on our health and wellness. The “Italian way of Fooding” has been recently proclaimed by UNESCO as Intangible heritage of Humanity and was celebrated by international newspapers such as the New York Times, The Washington Post, Time, and many more others. The list of the VIPs in love with the Mediterranean diet is endless: from Catherine Zeta-Jones to Heidi Klum, Isla Fisher, John Goodman, Penelope Cruz, Mark Zuckerberg, Kate Middleton, Robert De Niro….. .
It is not just a trend based on good and healthy food, but it is mostly a lifestyle trend, which is spreading everywhere. According to 90 renowned chefs, nutritionists and anthropologists, the success and popularity of the “Italian way of Fooding” depends on ten values, among which these are the most important ones:
- CONVIVIALITY, because the joy of being together at the table is a typical value of the Italian style. Eating together means sharing food but also friendship, values, traditions and very often putting together different generations;
- TASTING, because the meal is not only “food consumption”, but it is a way to try and enjoy the best flavors and fragrances;
- WELLNESS, because scientific studies have shown that the Mediterranean diet is healthy for people and for the environment;
- STYLE AND ELEGANCE, elements that can never be lacking in a typical Italian tablescape.
The other elements featuring the “Italian way of Fooding” are, in the following order, the QUALITY of the MADE IN ITALY products, TRADITION and INNOVATION, and, last but not least, CREATIVITY, because Italians can impress not only your taste but also your sight.
All of these values can be found in any Italian table setting. But there are 4 secrets to styling the “Italian way of Fooding” that we want to share with you:
1. EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil) is like water for Italians, and has exceptional health benefits. It should always be on the table. Each Region has its own productions and they all differ in taste and aroma. It is a must to put a little dish or condiment bowl in the mise en place and pour just a bit of the EVOO to taste with bread and salt.
2. Fresh Bread. Bread is another must of the Italian table setting. Homemade, fresh bread in a huge variety of shapes and different ingredients: from Grissini (bread sticks) to Focaccia (a kind of Pizza). Usually the bread stands in a basket in the middle of the table. It is an old tradition to pass the bread basket around the guests and pick a piece!
3. Match the new with the old. Italian tablescapes are often a mix & match of classical and modern design. There is always a piece on the table that tells a story. Very often it is something from the Grandma (cutlery, or textile, or glasses, or dishes) or a vintage object found in a flea market, or in an artisan workshop.
4. Pasta Bowl: never, never, never serve pasta or spaghetti in a dinner plate but always in a pasta bowl. No further comment needed….
Having said that, there is a last and most important rule in order to mimic the “Italian way of Fooding” and of living: you must have an eye for the utmost in quality, of the food, of the styling and of the guests 😉