The Anna Tasca Lanza Cooking School is what foodie’s bucket list headliners are made from.
Photography excerpted with permission from “Coming Home to Sicily: Seasonal Harvests and Cooking From Case Vecchie” by Fabrizia Lanza with Kate Winslow, published by Sterling Epicure.
Travel through some of the most breathtaking landscape imaginable in the Sicilian countryside as you make your way towards Case Vecchie. Wild fennel and tangled grapevines indicate that you’re on the right path to The Anna Tasca Lanza Cooking School — a place where time has stopped to allow life and food preparation to continue in the way it has been for centuries.
On the farm, in the kitchen, and around the table are places where you’ll feel fully involved in a Sicilian cooking experience. The pecorino and ricotta on the table are sourced from the milk of Case Vecchie’s resident sheep. The sun-dried tomato paste —estratto— may very well be a product of your labor that took place earlier in the day. This labor of love and celebration of tradition mimics the way Sicilians have been living life for centuries.
Coming Home to Sicily
Fabrizia Lanza, daughter of Anna Tasca Lanza, shares the ultimate Sicilian culinary experience with guests by offering an edible education through The Anna Tasca Lanza Cooking School. Fabrizia provides a taste of the landscape through various teaching culinary packages; from a lunch lesson to a five-night stay, guests get the opportunity to immerse themselves in typical Sicilian food traditions with tailored cooking experiences. All five senses are inspired on the Regaleali estate by following flavors from the field all the way to the fork.
One notable student who left a lasting impression at the school was former Gourmet magazine editor Kate Winslow, who recently spent nine months living and working at Case Vecchie. Winslow collaborated with Fabrizia by working at the cooking school, where Winslow collected recipes to help co-author Lanza’s new cookbook, “Coming Home to Sicily: Seasonal Harvests and Cooking from Case Vecchie.”
In the book, Lanza shares the story of making her way back home to the family’s estate to help her aging mother with the cooking school, founded in 1989. Fabrizia goes into vivid detail about harvests, the foods that the region produces using artisanal techniques, and the people that make this transformative experience all possible. Throughout the book’s narrative, Fabrizia shares more than 100 family recipes paired with stunning color photography by Guy Ambrosino.
Bring Sicily to Your Own Kitchen
For those of us who aren’t booking a trip to Sicily to stay at The Anna Tasca Lanza Cooking School, this cookbook is a great alternative. Through these recipes and the use of fresh produce from Melissa’s, home chefs can recreate a Sicilian tablescape in their very own homes.
Although many of these recipes will you have your family thinking you spent your entire day in the kitchen preparing them a feast, Melissa’s has some great items that will provide much-needed shortcuts for people leading busy lives.
The lentil salad with mint and orange zest recipe on pg. 120 is a delicious salad all year-round. The recipe time for this can be cut in half with Melissa’s steamed lentils. If you want to infuse some seasonal flair, pick citrus that represents that, like using zest from Ojai pixie tangerines.
Melissa’s steamed artichokes are the perfect life hack to prepare Fabrizia’s fried artichokes from pg. 108 in her cookbook, again, significantly cutting the kitchen time in half. Although we love enjoying a glass of wine and taking our time in the kitchen when we prepare dinner, not every night allows that pace, and Melissa’s steamed line gets our needs during weekdays.
Another favorite of ours from the cookbook is Fabrizia’s tomato sauce. With the use of heirloom Roma tomatoes, organic red onions, and Melissa’s peeled garlic and fresh basil, you’ll have this be your go-to tomato sauce from now on. Addio jarred sauces!
For more information on the Anna Tasca Lanza cooking school, visit annatascalanza.com.