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Antonino Aiello

40 years

Bio

Horse breeder for 15 years, I love country life and open spaces. My horse training camp was surrounded by tree woods, pastures, cultivated gardens and stables I used to spend all my spare time with farmers to learn all their cooking secrets and food conservation techniques.

What was your inspiration to get into cooking, food and teaching how to cook?

When I sat in my grandma's kitchen, she would make pasta while sharing memories of her mom and grandma. Then I realized my generation was missing something important: the handmade food techniques and traditions passed down through the ages. It was from this love for food that I became the executive chef and founder of Quanto Basta, the first street-front cooking school in my town. It is a faithful copy of my grandmother's kitchen, where she preserved meat and cheese for winter by hanging them from the roof's chestnut support beams and put fresh vegetables and fruit in glass jars filled with oil, vinegar, salt or sugar. Our conversations would go like this: Me: "How much salt are you putting in there, grandma?" She: "Quanto Basta", that means…the quantity that's enough… Me: "And how much is q.b. (Quanto Basta)” And here we are :)

What excites you the most about your work?

Sharing my knowledge with guests who will share it again and again with their friends and families. I feel like an ambassador of the most authentic italian culture in the world. An ancient culture and tradition that mustn't be lost.

How do you select the menu for you classes?

I let the guest who first book to choose the preferred menù, among the meat, the fish and the vegetarian one.

What do you love the most about cooking?

Look at people smiling and feeling loved. Every dish is a warm hug. They are always happy at the end of the class.