In search of the lost casserole – Italian Cuisine


Is there a link between the cuisine of the great restaurants and that of the home? Antonia Klugmann sees it, as well as in the memories that each one amplifies when in the kitchen, also in the instruments, custodians of precisely those memories.

The passion for pots of grandmothers it started several years ago. "I was alone," she says Antonia, "I was returning from one of my first internships (I was at the Dolada Restaurant – Pieve d’Alpago in the province of Belluno) and stopped at an antiques market in a small Venetian village. There I bought a stool for my home and one of the casseroles that we still use most today in restaurants with a single handle, made of aluminum with a thick base, perfect for all long cooking, braised meats, amaranth, polenta ".

Since then he has never stopped looking for them and buying them (many, friends and loyal customers, have also started to bring them to him, perhaps recovering them from their grandmother's kitchens) and among pans, pots and lids to The Embankment in Vencò, you discover jewels with decades of history.

Photographs by Monica Vinella

How many omelettes have one made crispy Lyonnaise pan (in iron with fairly low and flared edges)? And how many more can you make? This is a fundamental question, because reuse becomes the keystone of an environmentally conscious kitchen not only in the choice of ingredients, but in the instruments. «For me, iron pans represent maximum resistance and maximum conductivity, allowing you to work at very high temperatures without damaging them. The one I bought from Medallians (Alberghiera Medagliani, founded in 1860, one of the historic Milanese companies, a reference point for every chef, the place to find all the tools and equipment, ed.) 15 years ago, for my first restaurant, it's the same as then. I remember that Eugenio Medagliani looked at me and said: "Madam, I don't know you, but from the pans you buy I see that it will be fine". He hadn't seen wrong.

«The Lyon one and its companions have never been replaced, also because cleaning and maintenance are very simple. Forget the clichés, that is, no detergent, no scourer. On the contrary, the important thing is to wash it very well and oil it if you don't use it often. But this is not my case: 30-40 times a day, for 1 year, for 15 years .

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