Let’s take it right back. Luca Ciano was born into a family with an unending passion for food. In fact, his most recent book ‘Luca’s Culinary Journey’ (his first book is ‘Luca’s Seasonal Journey’) documents his formative years as a bambino where Nonna Dina was the matriarch of first generation cooks in his life – though Luca loves to quash that myth that all Italian nonnas and mammas can cook well!
“I have plenty of friends back home who have mammas who can’t cook to save their lives! I’m very lucky to have landed the perfect traditional Italian ‘food family’ when comes to gastronomy, enjoying food and enjoying life,” says Luca in his book, which features a nostalgic photo of Luca on his family holiday, fishing at Riva Bianca, Lierna, Lake Como.
The photo shows how ingrained the ethos of finding the freshest possible ingredient is for Luca, so much so that, in this instance, they’d fish for their dinner.
That modern approach to foraging for food remains today and applies to all Luca does – from handpicking the tomatoes and the herbs that go into his Chef Luca Ciano range of pastas sauces, to cooking a family meal for his wife Georgia and daughter Stella, to the lynchpin to his TV show, which is all about showcasing a key ingredient each week, then turning it on its head to demonstrate how versatile it is, and presenting it in a way that you may not have expected (coffee pappardelle with warm burrata and semi dried black olives, anyone?).