Welcome to The Italian Fork!

Hello! I’m Chiara and I live in Charlottesville, Virginia. I created The Italian Fork as an outlet to share recipes I learned as I went through life.

It seems strange to say that my second life started when the wheels of an Alitalia flight touched the ground at LAX. I was finally in California, the land I’ve dreamed about as a young girl sitting in my room listening to music and reading about Los Angeles. At 18, I left my home, my friends and with mom, dad and younger brother, embarked in the adventure of a lifetime.

But let’s not get too far ahead. My first life began in the outskirts of Milano, in Northern Italy, in a very small town—I like to refer to it as “the village”…we are talking about less than 1,000 people, where everyone knows one another and everyone has an opinion about everything. Imagine their delight when they found out my family was ready to move to Naples, in the South of Italy.

I was 15 at the time and could not wait to get out of that place. It was in Naples that I learned the difference between good food and out-of-this-world, get-down-on-your-knees kind of food: fresh Buffalo mozzarella, juicy grape tomatoes, delicious limoncello liquor, etc., etc., etc. After three colorful years, we were ready to make the continental leap.

A few things about me:

* I LOVE cooking and trying new things.

*It’s my day job to tell stories and on my time off, I let food do the talking.

*It may not come as a surprise that my first memory is about food.

*The coolest picture is of me, a 1-year-old me, eating a sizable chunk of Parmigiano Reggiano.

*I live in a very small apartment in Charlottesville, Virginia that I share with my husband and our cat/sous chef, Diego. Our kitchen has a small work space and an electric stove, two things I do not recommend—and highly dislike.  AH! We moved into a beautiful home almost a year ago. Big kitchen and a GAS stove! It’s the little things, people. Oh, and Diego has a little brother. Kitty Max joined the family in August 2012.

* I love cats. Diego&Max

*As a child, I used to watch my mother and grandmother make their way through the kitchen. From them, I learned recipes and home-made remedies. I am lucky since both my parents are amazing cooks. My mom favors baking and my dad excels at tweaking recipes with unexpected ingredients. My brother is wicked smart and hilariously funny.

*I am learning my way through recipes and I am not afraid of making mistakes. I will chronicle my successes and probably make fun of my failures, and trust me, there will be many. I will, however, always honor food.

*Oh, and I LOVE chocolate. No, really. I am obsessed.

I am always looking for feedback and I would love to hear from you: theitalianfork@gmail.com

Be sure to follow me on Twitter! @theitalianfork

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