This story we are going to tell you is set in a landscape without screens, a post-atomic and pre-Saffron Yellow space-time, where smartphones were not yet even an intention and Zuckerberg was not yet born. Apple yes, but the most common apple in the houses was still the Golden yellow. The televisions were the ones with the cathode ray tube, a Marchesi used to go in from time to time, a Vissani sometimes, and the closest container to a cooking program was a quiz game, Lunch was served led by Corrado (Mantoni). This is the landscape in which Teresa Galeone, lady in the kitchen of Already under the arch in Carovigno (Toast), he trained his cooking muscles: without teachers, without school, without a rag of tutorials. Like many other cooks of his generation, of course, with mothers and grandmothers as the only sources of supply of culinary information. But with a difference and a hidden treasure. The difference: a talent that allowed her to write the story of a self-taught chef who ascended the Michelin empyrean. The treasure: a collection of hundreds of numbers The Italian kitchen who rescued her, raised her, accompanied her in that ascent, which shows us de The Italian kitchen for the first time and exclusively (who else?).
Osteria Already under the arch: history
Step back. Already under the arch, the cornerstone of the Apulian haute cuisine, it was born as a tavern in the intricate maze of alleys in the historic center of Carovigno. This is where the Buongiorno family laid meals for farmers in transit and refreshment for men looking for a good glass of bulk wine. It is known history. Teresa enters the scene as the wife of Theodosius, son of the hosts, and works alongside her mother-in-law and sister-in-law in the kitchen. “I had a gregarious role, but I liked cooking and I had a desire that bit me on the sides to do and do better and better. In 1987 I became a mother, Antonella was born in June. Shortly thereafter I asked Tosio to buy me La Cucina Italiana, I cradled the little girl and read. I was studying at night. "
Lady chef he holds the first issue of his treasure in his hands, the date is July 1987, the cover is worn on the edges but the copy of the "monthly of gastronomy with the kitchen in the editorial staff" founded in 1929, is perfectly preserved. “She was my teacher – Teresa, leafing through, gives voice to thoughts – my guide. I have learned everything I know from these pages. It taught me how to boning and filleting. I tried the recipes from the first to the last page. I am not exaggerating. It is certain that I made all the desserts, from the first to the last, and in the next life I swear that I will be reborn as a pastry chef. I tried all the preparations that did not require too high a food cost. In short, no caviar. The family was my guinea pig, and I went on page after page without ever stopping ”. With Tosio by his side, always. A few years later the two boys harbored the dream of going one step further. What they do is take the reins of the family sign and move it exactly to the center of the city, in Piazza Vittorio Emanuele, within the walls of the elegant eighteenth-century building that had housed the town hall, before even a school, before even before the rectory of "Pope" Vincenzo (in the countries the parish priest has the authority of cardinal). The same building that had hosted a brothel before the law. In short, a place for sinners of the flesh or the throat. The second life of the Osteria Already under the arch began in 1992. Theodosius takes a seat in the dining room, Teresa is a single woman in charge of the kitchen. Loss and freedom. No boundaries and so much fear. It is a path to look for.
Reading, making mistakes, trying, trying again and scientifically dodging the spotlight, Teresa makes the history of the Apulian restaurant without giving it air, perhaps without even realizing it. “I found the narration of La Cucina Italiana easy, the perfect descriptions. If you followed the letter it was impossible to make a mistake. He recommended pairing with wine. And you found the cue to cook every day. I never wanted to sign up for a subscription, our trusted newsagent was right in front of our house, one step away from the restaurant, my husband never missed the appointment for a single month ". News stand Lofino, incidentally, is a resistance garrison still active at number 6 of via Adua in Carovigno. Teresa continues her story. “The school of La Cucina Italiana has helped me to emancipate me from my amateurish condition dealing with a restaurant. If I have ever perceived the evolution from those beginnings to a state of maturity in the kitchen? Frankly not. Here, among these pages I have had experience. To me, from Puglia, he taught to make risotto. And at some point I began to collect the compliments of the Milanese. The same thing happened with my braised meat, which Piedmontese people like a lot ", two small sagging pride that takes the place of shyness.
“My favorite column was the Cooking school. With monothematic lessons on horse meat, for example: I learned how to cut, how to behave with cooking. Especially fish, we in Puglia eat it whole, especially raw. I learned that fish is a world, you can offer it in slices, filleted, in a thousand ways. I remember a lunch at Don Alfonso, we ate a wonderful pigeon. It was crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside, the chest was pink. I shyly asked the chef how they got that result. Well, I waited anxiously for the number on the game of La Cucina Italiana and only then did I understand all the background of that dish, and I made one of my own, the Pigeon thigh and currant breast. We had it on paper for a long time, it was very successful. "
Teresa Buongiorno continues to churn out successful dishes and has baked many. The basic recipes learned at his personal school, he interpreted them with the raw materials of which Puglia is a generous land. Mediterranean cuisine with thoughtful additions of creativity, such as his Burrata in kataifi pasta, capocollo of Martina Franca, immature tomato cream and dehydrated olives, the enveloping and super-tasty Fusilli with white lamb ragout on ricotta cream, the whole Quail truffled with mashed seasonal potatoes and mixed salad, evidence of a round, comfortable cuisine, performed with an elegant hand. Above all capable of keeping up, impervious to fashions, identity and innervated by its clear recognition and also therefore evergreen. Like the girl in the kitchen with black black eyes who light up while leafing through the pages you can't live: "Look here – she smiles – all stuck, between cooking vapors and sugar". "The kids of today make me a little envious. They have millions of images to draw on every day, every moment. The kitchen on the other side of the world arrives on the screen in their pockets or perpetually by the hands, and they can reproduce anything they want. I didn't have this chance. " The challenge is between paper and post, between pixel snapshots and newspaper libraries.
It is a moment. Teresa turns her gaze back to her neat collection of La Cucina Italiana not in exit order, but for months. It's theobsession with seasonality which dictates the line in the kitchen and in the archive, so as to draw inspiration from fishing in the right period. But there is a precious number above all, the year 2005, the month of July. “They contacted us inviting us to the editorial office in Milan. A dream that came true, and a deadly anxiety that choked me. Tosio and I left from Puglia with all the ingredients that otherwise we could not have found. We brought durum wheat flour for the fresh pasta, the soaked chickpeas did a thousand kilometers with us, the ice cream for the zuccotto. A firm. Arriving at our destination, we spent a memorable day, preparing everything from the appetizer to the dessert for the photo shoot. We were greeted by the director of the time, Paola Ricas, a refined, elegant, helpful and welcoming woman ". Two pages full of words and images, and a portrait of Teresa with the smile of the great occasions for the column "They will be famous". Prophetic. Like the magazine that has just turned 90 raising generations of cooks and cooks. Under the roof of your home or under a starry sky.