Tag: teach

Niko Romito and the new campus to teach the culture of food – Italian Cuisine

Niko Romito and the new campus to teach the culture of food

The Abruzzo chef launches a permanent laboratory for chefs in Castel di Sangro, ready in 2022 and based on research, training and industrialization. With a North Star: "Everything must go in the direction of good and healthy food"

Niko Romito has a magnificent obsession with teaching. Perhaps because practically self-taught he has become one of the best Italian chefs (and not only) who in 15 years has gone from first courses in the family restaurant to Three Michelin Stars. Knowing how important the technical and cultural preparation of a future cook is, he opened in 2011 in Casadonna – the renovated ex-convent of Castel di Sangro where he leads the Real – its Academy, considered one of the best schools ever. "My reference was what was created byParisian École by Alain Ducasse: I understood that the method that allowed to conduct gastronomic formats, with great qualitative consistency, all started from the training center. An idea that I tried to apply to the model of Italian tradition and my philosophy, "explains the master from Abruzzo.

Chef and mentor

Sixteen students per course, thirty-two students a year, which generates "human capital" for the group's restaurants and projects, and at the same time spreads an approach to building one's own culinary language. After six months of immersive training – followed by top-level teachers – we start for a six-month internship, in one of the satellites of the Romito network: the three-starred Reale, which is a few meters from the Academy, the various Spaces, the restaurants of the Bulgari Hotels in Milan, Beijing, Shanghai and Dubai, the Alt taste station, the Bomba street food format and the Intelligenza Nutritional project partnership with La Sapienza University and the hospital menu production chain. It is no coincidence that the Michelin Chef Mentor Award 2021 went to him, in the month – November – in which Romito was director of the magazine “La Cucina Italiana”.

2022 target

Now a big leap in quality. A structure of 3700 square meters on Strada Statale 17 – also in Castel di Sangro – which will host the Niko Romito Campus. It will be a research and advanced training center that will weave interdisciplinary dialogues around food and innovation, with the possibility of translating ideas into formats suitable for each segment. A gymnasium of experimentation on the concepts of goodness and healthiness with potential repercussions on every category of catering. The campus will arise from a renovation project of a furniture factory. There will be research laboratories, classrooms, a production center for virtual teaching materials, common areas and an open space dedicated to agronomic experiments. Theory and practice will travel together: the outcome of the progress and activities on campus will also be shared with everyone through a virtual platform which will give an account of the path taken in Castel di Sangro. "The works will begin in a few months, we aim to open enrollments in spring 2022", he explains, "to hold the first courses in the following autumn". Romito elaborated the project during the many weeks of closure of his activities and obtained clear visions from it.

The social value

“One of my missions of the future is to make people understand the importance of food and the consequences it has on healthHe says. «In 2020 we have both aspects better in focus. So it is essential to make it clear that eating well and healthy can improve health. In addition to reducing public expenditure, because malnutrition generates 40% of diseases and therefore the expenditure of enormous resources to treat them. A serious cook cannot avoid being involved in these issues . For Niko, it must be said, these are nothing new: many projects – starting with Nutritional Intelligence conducted with the Cristo Re hospital in Rome – they helped him in the creation of the Campus. «In recent years I have understood the social value of food. And how crucial industrialization must be in food transformation processes to improve the catering of hospitals, canteens, companies and schools. The commitment must be that of convey good and healthy products through simple or more complex catering models, as long as they benefit the largest number of people possible .

Format incubator

Ultimately, what is the purpose of the Campus? "Sharing knowledge and developing culture at various levels, above all a new culture of food, of its transformation based on the values ​​of healthiness, sustainability, circularity, solidarity and democratic access. Always with the same scientific and technical approach: a single standardizable, accessible, open application protocol. Research is certainly the starting point of this path, whose immediate next step is training. But the purpose of this track is to become the incubator of new formats, necessary so that everything is not limited to theory, but you find a concrete outlet in entrepreneurship linked to nutrition and catering. It is a long and ambitious job, I realize that. But it is the only way I know ".

How to teach children to draw fruit – Italian Cuisine

Pencils, markers and sheets of paper can be a nice and instructive diversion for the little ones, in these days of forced isolation. And once the fruit is drawn, let's eat it!

On long days without the possibility of going out, entertaining i children it is indeed an arduous task. After the board games, the mask theater, the biscuits prepared together, the game play, what can be done to commit the time that never seems to pass? A nice idea that will take you a few hours could be that of teach your children to draw. What, you say? Fruit, for example, a way to make it look more familiar!

Drawing helps emotional development

Drawing is not only a playful activity, but a way to increase self-esteem of the little ones and for help their emotional and cognitive development. With pen and paper children will learn to become aware of the world around them and you parents will have the opportunity to increase, with your approval, the consideration they have for themselves, making them become more confident.

How to learn to draw

A nice exercise that you can propose is the live drawing since we all always have some fruit at home: put a nice basket on your table, fill it with all the fresh and seasonal fruit that you can find in this period, such as apples, bananas, kiwis, pears and let it be observed carefully by your children. Then, helping you (for some) with geometric figures, for others with curved and elongated shapes, trace the profile before the basket (a semicircle), then, one at a time, of the fruits that you will have placed inside. Help them to define well the contours of each single drawing and then to color them with different colors. In this way, the little ones will become familiar with the different fruits, they will learn their names, colors and shapes. And maybe even the taste if, after drawing the fruit, we eat it for snack!

Fruit designs to copy

Fruit designs

Fruit coloring page
Fruit coloring page

Read more tips for drawing fruit with kids in the tutorial

How to teach your dog to look for truffles – Italian Cuisine

How to teach your dog to look for truffles

We had a chat with Luca Aloi, an independent trifolau, who has been dealing with truffles for thirty years, first as a hobby and in the last 7-8 on a professional level. It has a farm (Aloi Luca Farm) which deals not only with truffle cultivation (white and black truffles), but also with the production of saffron and honey. His is a family-run farm: wife cooking in the small restaurant and three children who go with him to truffles.

The truffle dog

Luca Aloi has five truffle dogs, four pointer bracchi crossed with French bracco (Mia, Teo, Willy and Maia) and a Czechoslovak truffle wolf (his name is Kira).
"Training is very complicated, it is a game, and therefore it seems easy, but it is complex, it requires a great affinity between owner and dog. It takes 3-4 months to train a dog, then there are those who become phenomena, and those who are not brought. A bit like people.
Females are naturally more predisposed to research, they learn earlier, but they stop earlier (usually around five years of age, they end their research), also because they generally have less resistance to work. The male dog requires more time for training: usually up to two years he is very unpredictable and playful, but if you want to wait for him he can give you great satisfaction. The male can take truffles deeper than the female, and can make the seeker much longer, becoming a large truffle dog.
In general, if you want to be a truffle hunter, you must have more dogs: depending on the season, the type, the quantity of truffles around, bring the dog you are interested in, because not all of them are the same.
The training must start very early, with the newborn puppies, otherwise after the year it is a bit late, unless the dog is predisposed of his own: there are dogs that like the smell of the truffle and they go to seek naturally, but it is an opportunity that happens once in a thousand, and never to a trifolau.
A trick to train them just when they are very young, just born, can be to grease mom's breasts with truffle oil. So when they go to drink milk they already feel this aroma, this intense aroma and associate it with a pleasant thing.
The next step is to taste and eat the truffle. Both mixed in food, but also and above all as a game. The truffle is hidden, perhaps among the cushions on the sofa or under the doormat at home, and you are invited to look for it. It is also a good method for understanding the dog's aptitude for research: for example if there are more dogs, a challenge is played between them and there you see which is the best and best dog in the litter.
Finally, once trained to look for and find the smell of the truffle, you must teach the dog to respect it, that is, not to eat it and not to spoil it. To prevent him from breaking it or eating it, we invented a little game: we take the shell of a surprise from the chocolate egg and we put the truffle inside. We pierce it to let the perfume come out and we hide it so that it can go looking for it. The dog will find the truffle, but will begin to understand that he must not eat it .

Are you ready to train your dog in search of truffles?

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