Behind incuQIna there are three friends: Anna, Camilla and Francesca. We met in Barcelona, a few (almost 10!) years ago, where we all went to continue our work as researchers after a university degree in Biology. The idea of incuQIna was born almost by chance and as a joke, chattering on a sidewalk after some glasses of wine under a smiling moon. It was a warm saturday night, and we were saying goodbye and that promising to see each other soon.
incuQIna is our way to keep each other close now that we don’t share our small kitchen in Barcelona anymore and that we live very far away from each other. Anna is back in Italy and lives close to Venice; Camilla, after a long travelling hiatus, is now living in London and Francesca crossed the pond and bravely faces the cold winters of Boston for the love of science. Life is quite different from when we first met each other, between moving countries and the inevitable changes that “growing up” and life itself brings. But yet, together with our friendship, what’s constant in our lives is our passion for “la buona tavola”, eating well, for cooking and sharing our culinary discoveries, for healthy and tasty food that we can enjoy every day, even with a busy working life. But there is a little bit more in incuQIna, and it lies in the funny name we choose.
incuQIna is not a misspelling of the italian expression “in cucina” (in the kitchen). We play with the fact that the QI, “energy” in chinese, is pronounced exactly like the sillabe “ci” of cucina. It perfectly fits in this beautiful italian word, heart of a home and our favorite meeting point. In fact, scrolling and reading through incuQIna you’ll see that our blog combines a new yet “old” way to approach our meals and that in each recipe you will find a simple dietary esteem based on Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM).
incuQIna it’s simple and straight to the point, as Camilla wants, functional, as Fra desires, elegant, as Anna dreams, but most of all is full of love for all the good and beautiful things of life. While writing these lines we feel happy, grateful and excited for all the ideas that emerge .
Biologist/nutritionist. Curious by nature, passionate about music and books, expert in dietetics according to Traditional Chinese Medicine, she promotes health and wellness from a holistic point of view.
Originally from Este, a charming village at the foot of the Euganean Hills, Anna graduates in Evolutionary Biology at the University of Padua. In 2008 she moves to Barcelona, in the framework of the Leonardo project, to work for a few months at the Center for Genomic Regulation. Here she meets Camilla and Francesca and they immediately become friends. Anna falls in love instantly with the Catalan city, with its warmth and all it has to offer (concerts, art, sea, tapas and beers). In 2009 she finally decides to say goodbye to the the lab and its microscopes, flies and worms to devote herself to a discipline that fits her better and implies a direct contact with people. She thus gets a Master’s degree in “Human Nutrition and Dietetics” at the Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona. Leaving the beloved sea behind, she moves between the beautiful mountains of South Tyrol to start a collaboration as nutritionist in the medical center of a famous SPA of Merano. At the same time, she works as a freelance in other practices of northern Italy and she attends a three-year course in dietetics energy according to traditional Chinese medicine with the Tao School of Bologna.
A lover of nature, sports and outdoor life, Anna believes that the path to health has to go through a personalised, conscious approach to nutrition. For this reason she finds in the eastern, holistic view a great source of inspiration and a powerful way to help people find their wellbeing. Constantly on the lookout for new challenges, and pushed by an endless curiosity, Anna now is enrolled in a Master’s degree in Anthropology, Ethnology and Ethnolinguistics at the University of Venice. Finally, she collaborates to a project of food education for children (www.bambininmovimento.com).
Traveller, scientist, a social and artistic soul, inside her it’s hidden an italian nonna who cooks to bring together and comfort friends and family.
In 2008 Camilla leaves her beloved Rome, where she grew up, and moves to Barcelona to start a PhD in Molecular Biology. She immediately feels at home in the beautiful Catalan city where she manages to combine her hobbies with life in the lab. She starts to explore bars, restaurants and markets in the city, on the lookout for new flavors and recipes, curious about different food cultures and ways of eating. Thanks to friends from different countries and to many travels around the world she learns new ways of cooking and new recipes from different corners of our blue planet. Since 2015 she lives in London, where she continues her scientific career and where she also started a project dedicated to raising awareness on the issue of the food waste (www.surpluscollective.com). Since August 2017 it has been added another declination to her polyhedric personality: she becomes mum to an energetic baby boy for whom she can’t wait to start cooking.
When she meets Anna and Francesca it’s immediately clear to her that she has found the perfect companions for culinary experiments, foodie raids and travels. Camilla strongly believes in the power of good food as a mean to achieve health and well-being, and thinks that sharing a meal is an essential and powerful social act. If it is true that we are what we eat, it is also true that sitting around a table full of food prepared with love makes us feel more relaxed and closer to each other.
Scientist and photographer, official incuQIna kneading force, a woman of other times and endless source of pearls of wisdom and cooking secrets
Francesca was born in Lanciano (a small town on the Adriatic sea, in the region of Abruzzo) but considers herself a citizen of the world: this is why she has already lived in many different cities and countries. Among those Barcelona holds a special place in her heart: here she met Anna and Camilla but she also got he PhD in Biomedicine. She is now living in Boston, carrying on a research project on neuropsychiatric d diseases.
Biologist by profession and cook for passion, Francesca owes part of her deep love of cooking to her family, that since childhood initiated her to this art, a feature common to all people from Abruzzo. From her Mom she learned how to make homemade pasta, and from Dad how to play with different tastes and create new recipes. Seventeen years old she started to work as a waitress in a very famous restaurant in her hometown, and this experience finally opened her the door to the enchanted world of cooking. Since then, she continues preparing meals for friends and family, happy to find in the eyes of her guests that special joy that only good food can give. Curious and looking for new inspiration, she attended courses of japanese, arab, ayurvedic kitchen and of bread-making.