How would you describe yourself in one sentence?
I’m a resolute and disciplined dreamer who had the insolent luck to turn her greatest passion into a job.
What made you move to Puglia and what do you love most about it?
I moved here in 2017, after receiving the proposal to run Masseria Moroseta kitchen for a short residency. The first two weeks were an absolute epiphany – light, colors, nature, authentic and incredible ingredients bursting with perfume and flavor. I was in love.
The one dish everyone should try when in Puglia?
I’m a big fan of orecchiette with cime di rapa, packed with anchovies, garlic and chili. Crunchy breadcrumbs on top, perfection.
Is there one particular place (cafe, bar or restaurant) you miss the most in Milan?
I really miss classic milanese cafe culture, like Marchesi in Via Santa Maria alla Porta or Cucchi in Corso Genova. Sitting for hours with a friend, tea and pasticcini, chatting, reading newspapers and watching people walkin by. I know, very “sciura”, but honestly one of my favorite weekend activities.
Sweet or Savory? Do you have a single go to dish?
Hard to choose, in this moment i don’t have a very sweet tooth. I find myself more and more looking for simple but sharp flavors. Recently i often cook for myself a simple pasta spiked with citrus, white miso and parmesan.
Can you kindly share with us the recipe?
Cook spaghetti very al dente. In the meantime, in a medium pan gently fry a crushed garlic clove with a generous tbsp of butter. Once golden brown, discard the garlic and add the pasta. Dissolve one tbsp of white miso with a ladle of hot pasta water and add to the pan, let spaghetti gently absorb the liquid.
Off the heat add: grated parm, fresh zest of lemon and bergamot, few drops of their juices and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil, wix well to emulsify.
Serve immediately with black pepper and some fresh herbs, like thyme or marjoram.
Extra lemon juice if you love sour, like i do.
The ingredient you can’t live without?
Lemon, citrus, vinagars. Everything sour.
The times you eat out, where do you go? What do you order(for each place you mention) ?
Albachiara, Savelletri – everything crudo and pasta with sea urchin.
Osteria al Capitolo, Ceglie Messapica – fried artichokes and orecchiette.
Al cortiletto, Speziale – lamb braised in clay pot.
Le tre rane, lecce – plin di fegato e prugne, tiramisu.
Primo, lecce – parmigiana di melanzane, gelato al polline.
Who’s your inspiration?
I don’t want to sound too sentimental, but nature is definitely my greatest source of inspiration. Walking in the vegetable garden, observing how things evolve, what is ready to be picked, wild herbs growing courageously among the rows – it’s my kind of mindful activity, most of my ideas start there.
What does Italy have that no other place you have traveled to has?
Culture, attachment, traditions, belonging – a magical mix of these elements makes italy truly unique. I love travelling, but honestly every time i come back i can only surrender to the incredible beauty of our country.
Food is part of our dna, it’s the fil rouge that links us all. Each family jealously guards a secret and personal baggage of traditions related to food, passed from generation to generation.
My hope is that this strong attachment can turn into awareness, the incredible cultural and humanistic wealth that distinguishes our country must be protected and seen as a starting point for a new and much needed renaissance.
If you could describe Italy in one sentence what would it be?
Italy: genius, culture, beauty, good living, controversy, opulence, vice. Stir well and serve hot.