The language of food 2018.


After leaping a year, we are delighted to announce there will be two Language of Food workshops at the Anna Tasca Lanza Cooking school in Sicily this year.

The first is the language of Food – Spring loaded with myself and Luisa Weiss, which will take place from the 23 – 28th of April 2018, the most beautiful time of year. This will be the third edition of this particular workshop which aims to hone and develop your skills as a food-writer (that possibly makes it all sound a bit formal, which it isn’t, more about the scope of the course and participants here). Readings and craft talks will be followed by group discussions, writing exercises and space in which to execute them. Rest assured we will also be making merry each night.

The second is The Language of Food- Playing with your food writing with myself and Erica Berry, a new, and we hope bold course intended to help you hone your skills as both a food-writer and a creative writer more broadly. Readings and craft talks will be followed by group discussions, writing exercises and space in which to execute them. Again we will be making merry each night. This course will take place from the 3 – 7th July 2018.


Both workshops will be punctuated with excursions (most notably to a shepherd and cheese maker), walks and cooking lessons and will allow you to spend time in the best classroom there is: the fields and vineyards of Sicily. The best classroom not only because the valley in which the school sits is so magnificent and atmospheric, but because you are so close to the source of so much, golden fields of wheat, orchards of every imaginable citrus, vines dotted with the first signs of budding grapes, ancient olive trees with their twisted trunks and mad windswept branches that look like Einstein’s hair, prickly pears with prickles that fly at you, six-foot wild fennel plants with gangly stems and tops that seem like inverted lacy umbrellas, the disconcerting tangle that is a lentil and chickpea plants. I could go on. Close to the source, and also stories: thousands of years of history and tradition seem on a sort of parallel plane in Sicily, as if you can touch it all, eat it all, which of course you mostly can. We will of course be eating and drinking well.

I have linked to the schedules, which are of course flexible according to how both weeks evolve. You might also like to read past posts Luisa and I have written about previous workshops, here and here, and another about my first visit to the school, which itself has a brand new website.  If you would like to see pictures of past workshops, we have a flock of them on instagram (none of them quite living up to how bloody wonderful and alive the place is – it is not just a school but a vast working farm/estate –  or how productive and fun the weeks were). There is also writing from the second workshop I can link you to, a collection put together thoughtfully by participants Debra and Darryl and testament to what can be created when you put a pen to paper, or finger to keyboard, with food as a starting point.

I will be writing more about the course of over the coming weeks. Before then please feel free to get in touch here or by e mail ( if you have any questions about the course. We know it is a big commitment but both promise to be extraordinary weeks. If you can, come.





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10 responses to “The language of food 2018.

  1. ahem !! (it’s me again!!) Hilary xx

  2. This sounds amazing. Could you provide the link you mentioned to the writing from the second workshop?

  3. Paul Butler

    Dear Rachel

    Felice anno nuovo! We (my wife and I) are spending a month in Rome from Monday, in a flat in the Prati area, near a couple of markets where we hope to buy and prepare food based at least in part on your ‘Two Kitchens’ recipes. I loved the book by the way, partly because I lived for 6 months in Sicily, some time ago but the essentials of Sicilian cooking remain the same. Unfortunately we won’t be able to attend your course, which sounds marvellous – perhaps another year. I hope however it will all go well.

    Best wishes

    Paul Butler

  4. I sent a link to this article to a friend of mine and she loved it!

  5. Rachel, I am interested in attending your April workshop. I am coming from San Francisco and do not want to drive a car in Italy . What would be the best way to get there .

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