Nunzia Caputo to fly from Bari to New York to teach Americans the art of making the traditional ear-shaped pasta
After the chaos linked to the seizure of ‘untraceable pasta’ from a restaurant, the New York Times spoke of ‘pasta crime’ and interview the ladies of Via Arco Basso in the old Bari. Among them, there was Nunzia Caputo, 61, who has been making orecchiette since she was 6. In a matter of days, Caputo will travel to the Big Apple with Antonio Decaro, Mayor of Bari. Their mission is to present the art of making the traditional ear-shaped pasta at the Puglia booth of Travel Show. The largest travel trade and consumer show in the US, organized by the New York Times, will take place from January 24th to 26th.
Decaro considers it an extraordinary opportunity for Bari.
Together with the orecchiette, local flavors, craftsmanship, and tradition will also travel around the world.
“I will teach to the Americans – explains Caputo – the art of orecchiette: the semolina, whole wheat, and burnt wheat dough. The patience to prepare them ‘turning them with your thumb’, as they are done throughout Puglia.” According to her, this tradition was crucial in the recovery of the Old Bari. Since orecchiette became popular, “we have been invaded by tourists,” she said. Adding that before “There was a lot of crime here and today the situation has changed. Dolce and Gabbana, Mogol, and Virginia Raggi came. Orecchiette have been the right bait.”
Caputo has already traveled far to make her beloved tradition known. She went to Rome, Milan, on national TV, and even to the Palace of Culture in Warsaw. However, she does not feel like a star. “I am still the little girl who, at six, learned to work pasta from her grandmother Nardina. The one who met love in front of a pastry board, when an orecchietta fell and my husband Leonardo, my knight, picked it up as he passed by via Arco Basso. It was love at first sight.”
Ilona Catani Scarlett