️In Italy, if we aren’t eating, we are probably talking about eating. The word Mangia! (verb: mangiare) Pronounced: man-juhDefinition: “eat up!!” Yes, you literally say it with exclamation points with your hands in the air. It is one of the most common words in the Italian language. If I am not mistaken, Italians say “mangia” more than they say “ti amo”, I love you! Mangia, is a term of love all on its’ own…
️No matter how old you are, Italians (not just nonna, but the entire family) will encourage you to eat more of everything at the table when you dine with them. It’s an honor to serve YOU more!
️Last Sunday while eating dinner at my mamma’s (now the nonna of the family) I counted the word “MANGIA” said 15 times at the dinner table! This is nothing out of the ordinary for a typical meal. Here are some common phrases:
“Dai, mangia!” Come on, eat!
“Mangia che ti fa bene!” Eat because it’s good for you!
“Mamma mia! Mangia!” My goodness!! Eat!
“Mangia Bene” Eat well!
️These are a few of the phrases we use. I find myself saying these to my children as my mother also tells them, as she once told me (and still does), as my aunts/uncles/grandparents told my cousins and me, as my mother’s Nonna once told her.
️It’s a word that runs deep in our veins and culture. It transcends barriers of bad moods, toddler tantrums, and teenage rage. It centers the mood back to the food, the table, THE FAMILY. La famiglia.
️ MAMA MIA MANGIA!!! is a phrase that sticks with me as I think of all the dinners with my familigia then and now. As I share recipes and stories with all of YOU I hope to bring new recipes to your table and give you a reason to say- MANGIA! MANGIA!