Kids today are really so alienated from the source of food. If they are going to nourish themselves properly, if they are going to safeguard this environment we have and the economy that goes with it and world hunger that goes with it, they need to know about food.
Match the right food to the right occasion. Think about what you are celebrating. If you are honoring people, what are their favorite foods? If it is a holiday, what is the food for it? When you give an identity to the party, people appreciate that.
The Caprese salad perfectly represents the colors of the Italian flag. While I am not so sure that the colors of the flag stem from the cuisine, there is no denying that those colors do evoke a typical Italian plate.
In 1981, we opened Felidia, and the newspapers, the city papers, the big timers came, and I got invited on the 'Today Show' and so on. A lot of food luminaries would come to Felidia - Julia Child, James Beard, they all came.
I think traditions change and modify with each generation. With new members joining the family, their customs and traditions have to be respected and combined with the exiting traditions. And the children that follow are part of that new evolving tradition and, as they grow, will have input that will, in turn, continue to evolve that tradition.
I'll get home from work on Friday night and take out some beans and soak them. The next morning, I'll put them in a pot for soup, then just keep chopping, chopping, chopping - carrots and celery and cabbage - and in two or three hours, you have this wonderful, mellow soup that fills up the whole house with its aroma.
I see how people connect with me on different level through my show, how they want to transport what I cook into their home kitchens for their own families. It's my responsibility to always make sure that is quality.
The best things - when I really feel that I'm communicating, and when I really feel that people are getting it - are simple, straightforward recipes. I think simple is the hardest to achieve because you don't have all those elements to hide behind.
Choose recipes like a base recipe; make a big pot of soup and freeze it. From then on, you can take it in any direction. Another day put rice in it, or then put corn or sausages. From there, it's endless.
Vin brule is a version of mulled wine enjoyed in Piemonte, in northwestern Italy. It's a perfect choice for holiday entertaining because you can double or even triple the recipe and leave it over very low heat, ladling it out as your guests come in from the cold.
Physically, women have some challenges in the kitchen, like lifting heavy pots on and off the stove. You learn to adapt; you learn to find a way. But the biggest challenge for women in this industry is how to balance a family with such a demanding career.
Telling my grandchildren stories of my growing up is some of our favorite times spent together. They want to know what it was like and what I did as a child. They seem to be especially interested in the organic and simplistic setting I grew up in.
With the Industrial Revolution, the production of food was delegated to big companies in order for women and men to be in the labour force, to come home, stick something in the oven, and eat. It became a big industry that does not have a love affair with food nor is really concerned about nurturing you or giving you the right nutrition.