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Portugal: the zucchini flower is the symbol of Italian cuisine

Portogallo: fiore di zucca è simbolo della cucina italiana

On the occasion of the “Week of Italian Cuisine in the World”, the Italian Embassy in Portugal has organized a series of initiatives, and the emblem chosen for the program is the zucchini flower, a product of agriculture that is highly prized in Italian kitchens but generally discarded in other countries.

The celebration opens officially on November 22 in the ancient kitchens of the Lisbon Museum – Palazzo Pimenta, in an inaugural session introduced by the Ambassador, Carlo Formosa, followed by a lecture by the food expert Virgílio Nogueiro Gomes entitled “The influence of Italian cuisine in culinary history”.  Then, to reflect on the Food Coalition and illustrate the many projects of cooperation in the sector of agricultural production and distribution, on Wednesday, November 24 at 2:30 p.m., there will be a webinar devoted to Sustainable Agriculture, with the participation, among others, of the Executive Secretary of the Community of Portuguese-speaking Countries (CPLP),  Zacarias da Costa.

The coordinator of international Slow Food projects, Eleonora Olivero, will present the Portuguese Slow Food Association, established recently, with the president Rui Rosa Dias.  Special guest of the week will be “the seafood chef’’, Alfonso Caputo, manager of the restaurant Taverna del Capitano in Nerano. Born in 1970, after a brilliant international career that has taken him to Japan, where he even cooked for the Emperor, the chef returned to his little seaside village on the Amalfi coast and his family’s restaurant, which he now runs with his sister Maria, the first female sommelier in the Campania region. He has already received two Michelin stars and is the author of the books  Zuppe (Soups) (2007) and Alfonso Caputo, cooking seafood at the Taverna del Capitano (2010). At the invitation of the Italian Embassy, Caputo will prepare a gala dinner and offer a show cooking demonstration for operators in the sector at the Hotel Torel Palace Lisboa. On November 24, the chef will also prepare a dinner for the guests of the new Lodging Center for the Homeless of Santa Barbara, the district where the diplomatic mission has its headquarters. The Italian companies sponsoring the Week will supply the raw materials, aware that all the stakeholders of the economic system have to contribute to eliminate hunger and support individuals in situations of vulnerability.

Also on November 24, the Portuguese delegation to the Italian Culinary Academy, in collaboration with the Italian Institute of Culture,  will present the publication  Cartoon History of Italian Cuisine. From Etruscan noodles to tiramisu. During the entire week, the Italian restaurants of Portugal will present special menus with the coordination of the Luso-Italian Chamber of Commerce.  The closing event will take place on Sunday, November 28 in Porto, where the ASCIP Dante Alighieri Association will offer a lecture by the food&wine journalist Licia Granello. The complete program of initiatives will be available on the dedicated Facebook page.

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