As you may know, the “Slow Food” movement originated in Italy. People know, intuitively, passionately, that there’s something wrong with “fast” food. Nothing about eating, according to most Italians, really should be speedy…except perhaps how long it takes for the food to get from where it originates to your plate. This was recently overheard at the vegetable vendor’s:
CUSTOMER: “Do you have fresh green beans?”
CUSTOMER: “How fresh?”
GROCER: “They got here yesterday.”
CUSTOMER: (Just shakes her head no.)
And if you want fish? Where better to get it than fresh out of the sea. Here, the smaller fishing boats head out in the morning (God knows how early), and return with their catch. Line up on the pier and the choice is yours. If you want triglie (pictured below), but they didn’t catch it, you’re out of luck. It’s fresh or it’s nothing.
I love the freshness and the simplicity of Italian food. I think you need to live there to really understand the attitude to food.