Last updated on Mar 9th, 2021 at 12:11 pm

With nothing but a suitcase full of dreams and her faithful friend ‘the cello’, Cecilia Di
Cecco left Italy to work as a musician with the KZNPO in Durban. Here she started to
broaden her horizons by cultivating her music and food passions.

Eventually, 13 years later, Cecilia has launched her first cookbook titled Cucina in South Africa, with over 70 tantalising Italian recipes that are suited to all kinds of
diet. These include vegetarian and vegan dishes and of course some original
dishes from her home province Abruzzo in Italy. The book also provides readers with
some menu ideas for the winter and summer seasons. Each recipe contains
nutritional information and all the ingredients were carefully selected by the author
herself. Although she is fiercely loyal and proud of her Italian roots, Cecilia has
combined her love of local SA food experiences to create dishes with a special flair.

“I believe that by working with a team you can always achieve more”, says Cecilia.
“With Cucina in South Africa being my first cookbook I decided to do a collaboration
with Werner Adendorf (South Africa), Andrea Giampiccoli (Italy), Nash Munien
(South Africa) and Primrose Kuwarika (Zimbabwe). Each person brought their
fantastic experience and insights of the culinary world to the table, that has helped
create a book full of helpful, healthy, and most of all, tasty dishes,” added Cecilia.
Highly esteemed photographers, Mark Lanning and Val Adamson were involved in photographing each recipe and the overall fun in the kitchen that appears in the

Cecilia was raised in a small village in Italy called Lanciano with her mother and
father, who were both fantastic cooks. Her father specialised in sweet pastries and
cakes, while her mother excelled at savoury dishes. Her mother also taught nutritional
science for an educational programme at a local school, which meant that Cecilia
was taught the importance of healthy eating and having a balanced diet during her
formative years.

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We have featured some of Cecilia’s favourite recipes from Cucina in South Africa:

Cucina in South Africa is available in all mainstream bookstores, including Exclusive
Books, and retails for R495.

For more information about Cecilia Di Cecco, contact her directly on: