VANCOUVER – Never forget your roots. If they sink into a country rich in history, culture and traditions like Italy, they can become a key to success as happened to Marzia Bellotti Molatore (in the pic above), an Italian from Traona, a very small town in the province of Sondrio, who has lived in Vancouver where he brought authentic Italian cuisine, gaining appreciation and acclaim.
Marzia, today, has a book of recipes (in the pic below) linked to Italian stories (“Cooking with Mamma Marzia”) which she has sold throughout Canada and the USA, a very popular cooking site (www.bellacibo.ca) and cooking class “Bella Cibo” through which she gives lessons in Italian cooking.
Marzia, why did you leave Valtellina to arrive in Canada?
“For love. In 2003, I moved to Vancouver to join my husband. We got married and now we have two children ”.
And what did you find in Canada, compared to Italy?
“The possibility of being what I want and many new opportunities. Of course, it wasn’t easy to fit in here, there are so many differences with Italy and the first is the food! And then the confidentiality of the Canadians. But we Italians have an immense heritage linked to cooking, our culinary traditions very much fascinate the people who live here, who are willing not only to learn them but also to introduce them into their habits “.
How did the idea of promoting Italian culinary traditions come about?
“From… lasagna! Lasagna for me represents my mom, my family in Italy. Every Sunday on the table there were homemade lasagna with the meat sauce in cooking from five in the morning. When I came to Vancouver, my new Canadian friends, in love with my lasagna, convinced me to take a cooking class. Well… that evening, seeing the happiness in their eyes in making pasta convinced me to open my own business. So, in 2014 I started ‘Bella Cibo’s Cooking Class’ where I teach authentic Italian cooking lessons. And in 2018 I won the ‘Service Excellence / Langley Chamber of Commerce’ award”.
How did the recipes book come about?
“I wrote it during the pandemic. I financed myself and managed to sell six hundred copies in Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, Calgary and many cities in the United States ”.
In “Cooking with Mamma Marzia” you collected the family recipes with some stories: can you tell us one?
“One of my favorites is the one related to Fresh Egg Pasta. When I moved to Canada, I was fascinated by all the Italian Canadian women I met and who invariably made fresh pasta for their families. There is a lot to admire in these women, because they had to learn in an age without the Internet. My mother-in-law, for example, told me that the first time she made fresh egg pasta she didn’t even know where to start, so she threw some flour on the table, added the eggs and started kneading: 52 years ago, in Canada… “.
What is your goal?
“Passing on Italian cuisine abroad and keeping our traditions alive for as long as possible. The thing that satisfies me the most is seeing my customers who, with my family’s recipes, are able to create and experience precious moments in the kitchen with their families ”.
All that remains is to read the book, and … enjoy your meal!