Maria Elena Curzio - Home Chef, Naples. President of the Chef at Home Association in Italy, author of National TV programmes in Italy and author.
Maria is the winner of our WoW+Vitrizia competition and here is her story...
I am from Naples, Italy. I studied accounting and for many years I was a serious and strict administrative manager. I lived many years away from my home town and to be able to cook I bought a book of Neapolitan recipes, and by merely leafing through it I found myself back in my grandmother's kitchen, where she taught me everything I know. Then at the age of 38, a tactless doctor diagnosed me with breast cancer and “guaranteed” me just a few months of life. On the way home, I think my grandmother from heaven welcomed me back into her kitchen. Because on the way I just thought that I would like to cook and how to do it. Everything went well. But by now the tumour had saved my life and I was struck by a paragraph of an article, I decided to become a home chef. I knew that I had to learn a lot and quickly, books weren't enough and so I wrote many times to the well-known master-chef Gennaro Esposito, from Naples but very reputable all over Italy and beyond. After many attempts, I sent him an autograph letter and only then he answered me, accepting my request to go and learn in his kitchen. There I told everyone what I wanted to do and in the en,d he told me that if I could create a group of women with my passion he would have me baptized in one of his great events, the party in Vico Equense, in the Sorrento Coast area, in Naples. And in a few months, I was able to find the national association of chefs at home, and from there many things have changed. Even my private life. Finally, I could be myself, creator of my own projects. Gradually my curiosity led me to write about food, and a book was born, Una Cuoca a Domicilio, where I value what remains of each ingredient. Then I wrote for a long time in the Alice Cucina magazine and also participated in TV programs on the Alice channel and beyond. I realized that I also love writing scripts for food programs and now I am also the author of many TV programs. But I'm still curious and I believe that something exciting to be is always boiling in my pots.
Maria's Winning Entry:
Free to express my femininity, to smile and to pursue a profession that is my passion. For years I kept hidden under serious clothes and hair with cuts that aged me. Here is the lightness. After a breast tumour "saved my life", making me understand that I had to fly, create, I founded the national association Cook at Home, I became a cook, author, and as the hand in the photo indicates, with every touch of the hair a thousand ideas give me charge.
Maria joined Patrizia and Marianna for an Instagram live on Saturday, head over and watch it to see more of Maria: https://bit.ly/3L2Pl3c