On arrival in a different culture, a natural desire arises to remain anchored to your own identity and keep the links with your own roots alive. Thus food becomes not only physical but also spiritual sustenance, as the flavours can transport you beyond the boundaries of space and time. Those who are forced to migrate have to face a process of adjustment not without difficulties and in this period cooking your own typical dishes can become an opportunity for exchange, to talk about distant cultures and diversity and also to discover similarities.
Starting from these ideas, the “Incontrasi Cucinando” (Meeting through Cooking) workshop began in 2012, in the Sant’Arcangelo headquarters. The success of the workshop surpassed the most optimistic expectations, and at the request of some teachers from the “U. Pasca” Professional Institute of Food and Hospitality in Potenza, a training project based on multi-ethnic cuisine was created as part of the Professional Training and Education course of the Province of Potenza Training Agency. The course was repeated for three years and also produced a multi-ethnic cookbook in Italian, English and Arabic.
This led to the idea, currently being developed, of creating further training and job placement courses throughout the entire food supply chain, from production (experimenting with local cultivation of essential products for multicultural cuisine) to marketing (proposing the creation of a cooperative purchasing group to source the typical products of the various cuisines also in outlying areas) and consumption (promoting the training of specialized cooks and the opening of restaurants serving multi-ethnic food). Food can also lead to the creation of new jobs, both for refugees and for those who work with them.