Lucia Alviano von Flotow remembers the cold Atlantic crossing in 1962 when her family emigrated from Calabria in south Italy. She preserves the warm memory of her upbringing in a home where handmade food was a revered tradition.
Von Flotow captures that love of the fine food of her childhood and family heritage in her coobook “Lucia’s Calabria,” now in its second printing.
As Lucia grew up, she saw her paesanos create their own culinary businesses.
“My favorite were the trattoria, where the best baked goods were prepared, such as the cannoli which is a yummy pastry stuffed with ricotta and dried fruit,” she said.
“My recipes are interwoven with who I am as an Italian and I feel fortunate to live in Hood River, where I can maintain the traditions of my home town cooking,” said von Flotow. “Here in the Northwest, the climate is much different than Calabria but I am able to have access to wonderful and abundant local fruit, vegetables and meat. Having a large greenhouse to grow six varieties of figs has also been a huge part of my cooking.”