In this new series we will be hearing from Natalina Campagnolo, who turned her passion for cooking into a full-time job. Natalina will tell us why and how she built her business—and show you how you can turn your hobby into a second career. To learn more about Natalina, check out her two-part Freedom Film series.
During my 12 years as a stay-at-home mom, I spent a lot of time with other mothers. We all had the same challenges of raising a young family: husbands travelling, sick kids, numerous activities that had us running in all different directions—usually in the early evening. But, while others often lamented having to go home and cook a meal, I always looked forward to making dinner.
Until my children started going to their friends’ homes for meals, I thought every household was like ours. Mom or dad made a home cooked meal every night and the whole family sat down together, discussed their day, argued, laughed, and then did the dishes together! Well, as I grew older it seemed that was not the case.
My dedication to cooking was part of my Italian heritage—we’re definitely a culture that takes food and cooking to extremes. I realized not everyone was taught how to cook by their families, and even fewer enjoyed making food as much as my family did. That’s when I recognized an opportunity. I founded La Cucina di Natalina, a cooking school operated out of my home and supplied by the garden my husband and I grew together. I basically took my passion—really, my birthright as an Italian Mama—and made a career out of it.
Beyond wanting to show people how to properly execute a recipe, I also wanted to teach them about Italian food culture. This had the added benefit of setting my business apart from other schools. Nowadays anyone can find a recipe or cooking class online, Italian or otherwise, but is there a real Italian Mama that will show you how to properly make pasta leading that class? Probably not.
So, I had the idea. In my next post I’ll tell you how I got it off the ground!