Sunday Sauce


Sunday dinners have always been very special to my family’s Italian heritage because the focus is always on one important food: the sauce. Waking up to the smell of the fresh sauce on Sunday mornings was always the best feeling and an important tradition that has stuck with me over the years. The sauce has been a staple of Sunday dinners in our family since my grandparents came over from Sicily nearly sixty-years ago. My grandparents didn’t have the easiest of transitions when they immigrated here, but it was the traditions that they brought that always remained close with them. My grandmother Luisa’s sauce recipe was passed down to my mother, Florence and will be passed down to me next. When asked about the recipe, she says that she just “eyeballs” her measurements, the same way she learned it from Grandma Luisa. It is more than just a sauce; instead, it is a way for our family to come together and enjoy quality time over a homemade meal. Additionally, this sauce has been a way for my family to feel connected to their Italian ancestral roots. Since I was always intrigued in my family’s Italian heritage, I decided to study abroad in Florence, Italy this past summer. It was a personal way for me to interact with the Italian culture I had grown up in and have new experiences that will last a lifetime. By establishing this stronger connection with the Italian customs, I was able to see first-hand the way that food can bring people together just like it always has with my family’s Sunday dinners. Going forward, I hope to continue this tradition with my own family one day. 

Place(s): Sicily, Italy and New York City

– Luisa Belfiore

Relationship:  Grandchild of im/migrant Grandchild of im/migrant