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“For Italians, the most important thing in life is food. Let me show you how mouth-watering ingredients have shaped my home country.” Gino D’Acampo
Italian chef Gino D’Acampo presents a new six-part primetime series for ITV, combining lifestyle, travel and cookery as he travels across his beloved homeland.
Gino’s Italian Escape sees the chef revealing the best-kept secrets of Southern Italy - where he grew up - a region renowned for its vibrant people, food and culture, all of which gave Gino the rich traditions that continue to inspire him today.
Gino travels across the regions, from the beautiful Amalfi Coast to bustling Rome and the relatively unexplored Puglia and Basilicata regions, meeting local characters and sourcing the best ingredients so he can celebrate a perfect season with family and friends.
In episode one, Gino begins his journey on the stunning Amalfi Coast, where he visits the pretty town of Amalfi, a favourite holiday destination from his childhood, which is still popular with tourists today.
Gino says: “This place, Amalfi, means a lot to me, a lot of memories when I was a little boy. Probably age about 10 or 11. My mum and dad used to take my sister and I always here, to swim and to have ice-creams.”
Amalfi is world-famous for its lemons and Gino explores a secluded citrus grove, high on the cliffs above the town. Here, he picks and tastes Amalfi’s legendary lemons with a family who own the grove.
Gino says: “This is lemon heaven…so you can peel it and eat it like that. You can eat the skin as well. This is surprisingly sweet.”
Motivated by the breath-taking location, Gino whips up a creamy lemon mousse topped with crushed amaretti biscuits - using Amalfi’s unique fruit and the local citrus liqueur, limoncello.
Eager to find more tasty Italian ingredients, Gino travels further down the coast to an organic buffalo farm, where he meets mozzarella expert Nicola Palmieri and tries his hand at crafting the pliable cheese.
Gino explains: “Happy buffalos means amazing mozzarella, so these fine specimens get the royal treatment, even a personal massage, and it makes all the difference. A cow milk mozzarella is quite tasteless so usually Italian people, or myself, I will use it when I bake pasta or when I cook generally. A buffalo milk mozzarella, you shouldn’t cook with it, you should just eat it like you would eat an apple.”
As the sun goes down, Gino hosts a sailing trip with his new friends from the lemon grove, the Aceto family, and dishes up delicate buffalo mozzarella wrapped in parma ham and rocket leaves, paired with a delicious cocktail of limoncello and prosecco.