Share meals and laughter with your fellow travellers and locals in the exchange of knowledge, ideas and traditions.
Go to the roots of the gastronomical knowledge passed on by generations of shepherds, farmers, cheesemakers, bakers, fishermen and the guardians and storytellers of the hearths. This a dynamic and interactive workshop which involves you with locals to understand the land, the limestone belly of south, which produces a cuisine that is a compendium of flavours of earth and sun.
Explore the southern Italian food culture shaped by millennia of migrations on the paths of transhumance and the trading route of the ancient Via Appia, from the farmlands to the Mediterranean coasts.
Learn about and cook with, the fundamentals of southern Italian cuisine- Olive oil, wine, durum wheat flour, cheese and seasonal produce. How it is grown, harvested, produced, and cooked. Cook, eat and enjoy it with the community who makes sitting down for meals an important part of their everyday.
Cheese making – Taste the giuncata (the first cheese of the morning) and make pecorino,ricotta, mozzarella, scamorza and burrata. Find out about natural rennets, and how to form and age cheese. Cook and prepare today’s lunch. Trek the pastures alongside the shepherd at his meditative pace, while learning of his plight to preserve his way of life, and lunch in the fields with his family.
At the foot of the Calanchi in the centenarian groves, distinguish a good olive oil, it’s properties, olive cultivars, and harvest through tastings and talks. Make the renowned Altamura bread, learn about the mother dough and the crunchy crust, and tour the fortified town.
Hit the streets with pots, burners, and baskets of pomodori, melanzane and rucola to cook and prepare dinner for the locals. The butcher will be with us to give guidance on meat cuts and make salsiccia together- Dinner alfresco. Each participant invites a guest from the street.
Follow the Appian Way through the durum wheat fields and learn about grain varieties, traditional pasta, and as the sun sets eat dinner by candlelight in the company of frescoes in a rupestrian church. Walk through the mazes of Matera, a Unesco World Heritage site, discover its cave culture history, art exhibitions, and dinner on the piazza: cruschi peppers, cheeses, cured meats, pizzas, artichokes and wines. We’ll travel through the white-washed towns, red oxide terra and drystone walls of the Itria Valley to reach and inhale the blue Adriatic coast. Take the time for a swim and sunbathe. Grill octopus on the terrace overlooking the cove, while the fisherman makes a dish from an old family recipe – he is very excited about cooking and sharing his home with us.
Walk the land of the masserie, the fortified farmhouses and cave settlements that represent in Puglia the sum of labor, bounty and beauty.
The workshop is led by Puglian native Tonio Creanza, the Founder and Director of Messors and 6th generation olive oil and durum wheat producer, along with his colleagues of local farmers, cheese makers, shepherds, historians, restauranteurs, etc.
Tonio grew up on his family farm tending to durum wheat, vineyards and olive tree cultivation in the historical and archeological rich setting of Puglia. As a cultural heritage conservator and 6th generation olive oil producer, his knowledge and passion for food and history is echoed in the workshops he has been running for the past 25 years. The hands-on and in-situ approach of the workshops creates an enriching living school model and culturally connecting experiences for travelers and locals.
While tracking the darting flock as it chows down on the erba medica and centofoglie plants dotted among the ochre-hued moonscape of tufo limestone, our cameras soon fall to our waists as we adopt the shepherd’s Zen-like mindset. We join him foraging for wild rocket, while engulfed with the aroma of fennel and thyme.
August 27th – Sept 3rd 2018
- Includes arrival and departure dates
email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
8-day workshop fee:
- Includes your stay (shared occupancy), transportation to and from the Bari airport or train station on arrival and departure days, meals and wine, entrance fees to museums and sites.
- Does not include: airfare, personal health and travel insurance. personal expenses.
What to expect
8 days include:
- Learning about and cooking with, the fundamentals of southern Italian cuisine- Olive oil, wine, durum wheat flour, cheese and seasonal produce. How it is grown, harvested, produced, and cooked. Cook, eat and enjoy it with the community who makes sitting down for meals an important part of of their everyday.
- Olive oil tasting and talk on “The origin and evolution of olive oil extraction; distinguishing a true extra-virgin olive oil and demystifying supermarket labeling definitions. In the Olive orchards- talk on cultivars, pruning, tending, harvesting.
- Cheesemaking at 3rd century B.C. Fornello Cave site, meet with the shepherd and his family to bring in the flock from pasture and be part of his daily life. Learn about the cheeses of Puglia, traditional rennet, and aging. Participants will make pecorino, mozzarella, bocconcini, treccia, burrata, scamorza.
- Visit and talk on the evolution of Matera and its Sassi, the unique cave dwelling settlements inhabited for a millennia and UNESCO heritage site. Dinner at local osteria with seasonal and local ingredients.
- Make olive oil and flour taralli with fornaio Giuseppe at Antico Forno Santa Caterina (15th century) and learn about the mother dough of Altamura DOP bread.
- Drive deep into the heart of the high secluded murgia plateau to eat dishes created by a chef who planted a garden with his father of old cultivars in order to restore old tastes. The chef works from his muse and teacher: a biodynamic vegetable garden of Mediterranean scents of thyme, oregano, sage and seasonal vegetables. You will also try local meat dishes such as donkey.
- Historical district walking tour “The urban evolution and rural settlements of Altamura driven fear and love”- centro storico from neolithic to medieval era: the historical connection of people, food, and land.
- Basilicata region- Fish dinner and local white & sparkling wines and a late evening swim in the Mediterranen sea.
- Local farm- talk on Durum wheat crops, seeding, and harvesting. Learn to make durum wheat flour pastas specific to the region.
- Take to the streets of Gravina to put your skills in practice- prepare and cook dinner for locals. Each participant invites a guest from the street.
Excursions to Matera, Altamura, Mediterranea sea, Calanchi region,Valle d’Itria, and historical sites of Botromagno, Jesce, Fornello.