Nowadays, a ‘New Italian Cuisine’ with a specific identity as such, easily recognisable by all, does not really exist any longer. There are more than one, with more than one founding head chef.
Gualtiero Marchesi was the forerunner of this ‘new cuisine’ with the publication of his book La mia nuova grande cucina italiana (My Great New Italian Cuisine) upon his return in 1980 from France, where he had gleaned the secrets of nouvelle cuisine.
Here are some video recipes of traditional dishes re-created by contemporary master chefs.
Gualtiero Marchesi, the founder of the New Italian cuisine
The story of Gualtiero Marchesi, unanimously considered the founder of the ‘new Italian cuisine’ and - in the opinion of many - the most well-known Italian chef in the world, began in Milan, where he was born in 1930. In 1986, he was the first Italian chef to receive 3 Michelin stars, the ultimate foodie accolade, that were subsequently reduced to 2 in 1997.
In June 2008, however, in a controversy with the Michelin system, Marchesi also became the first chef ever to famously denounce the award. He was critical of the stressful burden placed upon the chefs and he lashed out at the French guide explaining that he no longer wanted points for his new restaurant, Il Marchesino at La Scala - only reviews and ratings.
Alongside the Marchesi Fondazione, set up to promote the arts through taste, he established the Accademia Marchesi, ‘a place for study, training and experimentation’ - he claimed proudly - where he could ‘teach young cooks and promote the principles of healthy eating’.
As a true innovator, he was also the mentor of today's most talented chefs (a definition that Marchesi did not like, preferring to be called a 'cook'): many of the contemporary food celebs have passed through his doors - Enrico Crippa, Andrea Berton, Carlo Cracco, Davide Oldani, Ernst Knam and Pietro Leemann to name a few only.
Find out more about the story of the founder of the New Italian Cuisine by checking out the video interview on Raiplay.
SIGNATURE RECIPES OF TRADITIONAL MILANESE DISHES
Risotto with gold leaf saffron by Gualtiero Marchesi
Ingredients and a step-by-step guide to the dish created in 1981 by the godfather of modern Italian cuisine, who made it famous all over the world: saffron risotto with edible gold leaves which, in addition to being extremely tasty, is also claimed to have healing powers.
Saffron risotto by Carlo Cracco
The video recipe of delicious Saffron risotto, Carlo Cracco’s signature dish served up in his restaurant in the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele in Milan.
Claudio Sadler’s Milanese cutlet
Claudio Sadler, one of the top starred chefs in Lombardy, reveals all the tricks of the delicious Milanese cutlet - a dish that suits all palates and all ages - and guides us through this video recipe.
Rice, saffron and panettone by Davide Oldani
With the basic ingredients of traditional cuisine, Davide Oldani lends his creative genius to the invention of dishes both sweet and savoury. Let us take a look here at a video of his signature recipe where he toasts rice without onion and doesn’t cook saffron together with rice but adds it later as an infusion, for a lighter, smoother result.