A New Year ~ A New Diet

fresh fruit - beyond the pasta - mark leslie

Got Fruit?

With the ever increasing popularity of my book Beyond the Pasta, I have been getting a lot of response from people wanting to know about the Italian diet.

Am I a dietitian? Nope, not by a long shot.

But having just returned from Italy, where I spent more time with the Stefani family, I have to admit that I did notice some things. First, fresh and minimally processed food is always the first choice. Next, including fresh, seasonal fruit as a part of every meal – breakfast, lunch and dinner – is routine. When was the last time you ate three pieces of fresh fruit a day? How about even one?

This year I am going to start focusing on “Bring Your Family to the Table” as my effort to focus in on the central theme of my book – simple, fresh food prepared with care and served around the table. It is here where, beyond your body getting refueled, your soul gets refueled, too. Of course, not every meal around a family table is going to be sunshine and lollipops, but it is the place where we all discover who we are, what we believe, what we don’t believe, and what we value as family, friends, a community, and a nation.

But before I get all “crunchy granola,” here is a video clip I made one afternoon after lunch while I was in Viterbo with the family. Enjoy –

And, in case you think that fruit is only important to this family, I have to tell you that every restaurant I ate in, whether in Siena or in Rome, I was always asked by the waiter if I would like “dolce o frutta” – “dessert or fruit” – after dinner. When was the last time you were offered fresh fruit as a dessert choice in an American restaurant? Hmm, I think we could learn something.

Buon Appetito and bring your family to the table~