This new generation of social media, instant gratification, “me, me me,” personas and pop culture and train wreck reality TV shows, has diminished the now vintage sense of family time at the dinner table. Long gone are the days of gathering after a stressful workday to discuss and share details of the daily experiences, challenges and accomplishments.
There’s hope, though, if you want it!
In Cuban and most Latin American culture, it’s very traditional to have breakfast every morning, replete with café con leche or café au lait, a nicely toasted loaf slathered in butter and maybe some variation of an egg sandwich. The Spanish, in all their genius perspective on healthy living, take siestas, or mid-afternoon breaks from working, lasting 2-3 hours where they convene with friends and simply enjoy life! But, that’s overseas in the land of the Europeans where work is simply not viewed the same as us North Americans.
In my unofficial research and observance of this new way of living and enjoying life, food, friends and family, here in the States, I’ve come to accept that it’s just not the same as the days when men tipped hats and women set tea trysts. However, there is a glimmer of an open door to still enjoy some lovely traditions year-round. After all, we’re with our loved ones most of the time so why wait until the big three (Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas) to get together to celebrate through feasting?
While my family makes it an audible and lively point to stick to feasting traditions, especially during Thanksgiving, where we all assume an active role in the cooking, there are a few other occasions and newly created traditions we relish in celebrating and now look forward to enjoying when the time comes.
To read the rest of this post and find out what my suggestions for creating family traditions, read my column here on Dean & DeLuca’s Gourmet Food Blog.