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Ecco il Natale!

Here is Christmas! A celebration of love, goodness and cheer in the midst of sadness and angst and the effects of Covid-19 on our psyche, health, wealth, lifestyle, and daily routine. A time to hold on to the season's family traditions kept sacred and passed on from one generation to the next as we are reminded that food language, like the Spirit of the Season, is also an expression of love, goodness and cheer and for sure it keeps Italians happy and connected. For the occasion, do like I do: put your apron on. Do a video call with your best friend and have fun making strufoli or struffoli together. This way you keep social distance, stay safe, yet connected. Strufoli are a traditional central-southern Italian Christmas holiday treat, fried tiny balls of dough covered with honey and candied fruit.

Perhaps, like me, a month or so ago you have ordered Italian Christmas treats online like panettone (chocolate, pistachio, chestnut... you name it!), mostaccioli, torroni (nougat) and croccantini with almonds, chocolate or coffee as well as candies and chocolate praline filled with real brewed espresso (Pocket Coffee) or liqueur (Strega's are the best!). Try Magie (Magic)... hum! I grew up on Strega!

In a few days is Christmas. No matter what you celebrate this holiday season, it is a time to take a step back from the worries, fear and angst and to enjoy the Spirit of the Season, our traditions, life, each other and togetherness even if it means we must social distance to achieve that. Schedule a video call with your loved ones. Appreciate what you have. Enjoy that special time together. It is worth it.

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