This week we had our office party to celebrate Christmas and the end of another great year. Instead of going out to a fancy restaurant like we normally do, I decided to have it at my house and cook a big meal. I put together a dinner of Italian Sunday Pork Gravy and Rigatoni with Meatballs.

CAIJDKTRI don’t cook often, but when I do, for a meal like this, I put a lot of work into it. As the team had gathered around and we were having some drinks and snacks, our creative director Tori Rose asked about the story with the meal. I explained that my grandfather from Italy would make this wonderful food, and when I tasted the food at what would become my favorite restaurant, Café Martorano, it was just alike.

After many trips to Ft Lauderdale to eat at Café Martorano, I became more and more intrigued with learning how to cook like my grandfather had cooked. As I got to know the café’s owner Steve Martorano and talked to my mother and father about what they remembered of his cooking, I experimented until I got what has become my version of my grandfather’s Sunday Pork Gravy and Meatballs.

Upon hearing my story, Tori pointed out, “When you look at it, isn’t making meatballs like this kind of like business?” I agreed. You know, cooking this meal takes a lot of care and work (business also takes time, effort, and lots of work). You have to bring together a variety of ingredients (like people and resources). You have to mix the pork, veal, beef, eggs, bread crumbs, bread, parsley, and olive oil a certain way and cook them just right (in business mixing the people the right way and in the right amount).

I enjoy making this meal and was happy that all the care, patience, watching over, making the refinements, stirring things up when needed, throwing some new things in when needed to rebalance, and even giving it a little love makes for a great tasting meatball and a strong performing business.

Merry Christmas everyone and hope your holidays and new year are as wonderful as you desire to make them!