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The heart of the table book launch by Carmela D'Amore

This is about what I want to share with you about my second book. The heart of the table - unlocking the treasures to family and community through Sicilian food.

I thought about what I wanted to say in my busy schedule, so I wrote a speech to share with my guests and visitors.

Contemplating each person would hear what I wanted to share about my book. I thought I wanted to keep it simple and straight to the point, here it is:

Celebrating the collaboration and connection between food and family.

What would possess me to write a book that has taken 2 years to write and countless hours in creating? And a lifetime of experience!

We all come from different cultures and can relate to my families story. Every story has a beginning with the threads of the past into the future.

This is a true story that started when my mother told me about my nonno Stefano and I saw his picture as a little girl, when I was ten years old I met my mother’s family, she was the only one of 8 children that had left to come to this young Australia that was calling for migrants to work.

This is the thread that has spanned its way through nearly 4 generations. Crossing the continent into this new world Australia our adopted motherland.

Meeting my maternal grandparents was definitely a turning point in my life as the experience of this little girl meeting them for the very first time, they lived in a town called Milazzo, Sicily across the beach side, my nonno was a tuna engineer with boats and a great big establishment where all the tuna went in to get sorted out and preserved.

Can you imagine with the eyes of a little girl how huge this looked!

Read the journey of the story of the long table from nonno Stefano, how this spirit went into the community making it strong.

This story was stacked with the every day life and challenges, until the passing of a generation took place, I started to search for the meaning of life’s purpose..

It leads me to doing a course with KP of influence, which gave me a network of friends and colleagues.

This led me to a meet my beautiful friend and photographer Beth Jennings..

Beth led me to be very curious about doing a course with Carolyn Tate, which is called The Slow School of Purpose.

Unpacking the stack with the Slow School of Purpose with Carolyn Tate, Sandy McDonald and John Yeo..

Finding the core of purpose is the Power of the Table, the very thing that I uncovered from my soul and heart, it is the blood running through me heart and body, it is the generations of family running through my veins.

This is the place where food, and family are the very heart of the community.

Beth Jennings, and I did the photos in Sicily together…

The photos in the Heart of the Table are all of Beth Jennings work in my book..

The Heart of the Table is about connecting food, family and community together. We come from a culture that is slowly dying I wanted to preserve it for the generations to come, and I want to honour the sacrifices that have been made in the name of family.

Coming from a country into a new world is not easy it is one that requires Courage, perseverance and vision.

Italian migrants had a vision for their families; it is the jewel in their crown.

Family mean more to them than any material possession, this is the treasure that I what to share with you, the collaboration between food and family.

Food is the most important thing that all Italians think about all day long!

What are we going to eat?

Where, and when..

Always ready to share their table and plate with strangers and friends.

When they sit at the table it is the communion of family that they share with you, it creates strong connections, when we have a strong connection with our family it only strengthens us as individuals creating a trail with everyone we touch including our community.

The chapter of the women of Sicily introduce Rose, and Rosetta.

This chapter is woman from Sicily sharing their story to you and a heart felt recipe that they share with you from their family.


Bottom-line what is the heart of the table about!

Its about the collaboration between food and family what does it mean? Its about the essence of humanity it is weaved into our DNA we need to connect, communicate, collaborate and commune with people, when we do, we become healthy individuals, it touches everyone who comes across our path, extending into our community.

Ask them if they have a story of their own?

There is a richness I would like for you to encounter with.

Ask everyone to close their eyes and remember a special time when they where sitting across the table with family and friends. Now ask them to stay in that moment and feel the magic together… Open your eyes.

As we go forth, to day, I would like to challenge each one including myself, to become more aware of what the heart of the table means to us. Its not a material possession it is tangible can only be felt from our spirit and soul.

This is the gift of my families’ heirloom our treasure of what food and family is to one another.

Beth Jennings took all the photos of the book launch you can see them on The Heart of the table page, here is what she said about the book launch:

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There will be another book launch in Melbourne in the Carlton Museum I will let you know as soon as I have the date, it will be a cultural event.