“I celebrate 20 years on TV”

“I celebrate 20 years on TV”
“I celebrate 20 years on TV”

The presenter returns to Italia 1 with “Cooked and eaten – The menu”, on the threshold of the twentieth anniversary on TV

Tessa Gelisio happy in her kitchen. Here he prepares the dishes he proposes to “Cotto e Martino”, the “Open Studio” column he has been running since 2011

Giulio Pasqui
April 1, 2021 at 12:05

Gives Saturday 3 April, come back “Cooked and eaten – The menu“on Italia 1 (at 12.10). A new cycle, inaugurated by two Easter specials. Inevitable, she: Tessa Gelisio. For ten years he has elegantly led the “Cotto e Mangiato” column within Studio Aperto and has been managing the spin-off for eight years. “We have reached the 19th edition, it is a historic program by now”.

What is the longevity recipe for “Cooked and eaten”?
“Maybe it was the first cooking tutorial on television. In less than two minutes the public has all the steps and ingredients for a recipe that can be replicated at home, even for those who are not a cooking genius. These are practical recipes, within everyone’s reach. “Cooked and Eaten – The menu”, on the other hand, keeps a high pace and gives you many ideas, but has a more entertaining mood. Less focused on the recipe, but with more elaborate ideas and techniques ».

What have you learned in these ten years?
“Many things. I have exceeded 1800 recipes, which I have thought, conceived, tested and proposed for transmission. It is inevitable that my cooking skills have increased ».

Have you ever thought, even remotely, of leaving the program?
«I always like to experiment. I have many passions and have always tried to turn them into a job. Doing something else yes, I like it, but giving up no, I didn’t think about it: “Cooked and Eaten” is a program that I feel is 100% mine. Not only because it satisfies my passion for good food, but also because it allows me to be useful to those who look at us. The cuisine we offer is healthy, because I follow the Mediterranean diet, omnivorous, because it is suitable for everyone, and sustainable, because I only use seasonal products ».

What are the novelties of this new season of “Cooked and eaten – The menus”?
«This year the program is back with news and confirmations: there will be a fair mix between the old friends of” Cotto and eaten “and new signings that are added to this team. A few names? There will be Andrea Mainardi, Theo Penati, Andrea Berton, Luigi Taglienti, Renato Bosco, Chiara Pavan, Claudio Sadler. There will be a moment called “Menu at the museum”: we will go to the Museum of science and technology in Milan to find out how some techniques have changed the kitchen thanks to technological innovation. We will be accompanied by the curiosities of Roberto Giacobbo. Another novelty will be the “Double couple menu” space: thanks to a trick, I will split up. But I cannot reveal more ».

Cooking programs abound on TV. Is there anyone you particularly like or, conversely, someone who makes you change the channel?
“Can I be honest? Almost all of them make me change the channel (laughs). What I don’t like is excess. To make a show you exaggerate, you twist. The trend, also amplified by social networks, is to propose “instagrammable” recipes. Beautiful to look at, but then they don’t know anything, or they are excessive, or they have incorrect combinations. I also happened to make some very good recipes, but in photos and videos they didn’t do enough. Peace, the important thing is that they are good ».

What happens to all the cooking for the program?
“I’m a freak in this. Now, due to Covid, only me or my family can eat what I cook. So I freeze everything, and we eat it: I never throw anything away, plus I have reduced the quantities per single portion. Normally, however, all the members of the production left the set with the “packets” full of food, such as “schiscetta”. Food is sacred, it is not thrown away ».

Have you ever got tired of cooking? Are there times when you think: “I can’t take it anymore”?
«No, never that. More than anything else, there are times when I’m “tired” of inventing new recipes. There are no authors who help me, all the recipes you see have been designed by me. I observe, take inspiration, experiment: it is an important creative commitment. Having reached 1800 recipes, the main problem is being able to do something new that has not already been proposed. I happened to have made a dish similar to that of seven years before, without realizing it ».

Tessa Gelisio, we are just a few weeks away from her twentieth anniversary on TV. He will celebrate it in June.
«It has been 20 years of television broadcasting, it is a result that is as beautiful as it is unexpected. I would not have imagined to get to celebrate 20 years on TV. When you are young you don’t have such a long perspective. Instead, my path has been beautiful and rewarding. I have to say thanks to Mediaset, a great family, which welcomed me 17 years ago ”.

Is it true that Licia Colò is somehow “responsible” for her television career?
«I worked in a turtle recovery center, near Follonica, in Tuscany: among other things, I was in charge of guiding tourists. At one point, Licia Colo, who was already working on television, came to make a report on storks. I said, “Wow, that’s cool.” What I was doing with tourists, that is, raising awareness of the love for turtles and respect for the environment, she was doing in a much more powerful way to millions of viewers. That, for me, was a real enlightenment ».

How did you then transform that enlightenment?
«I became a journalist and started writing about environmental issues, until TeleMontecarlo arrived: they were looking for an expert in underwater environmental issues and my figure was perfect for that role. What were my passions have become a job, there is nothing more beautiful ».

In addition to “Cotto e Mangiato”, his career has been marked by “Pianeta Mare”. Do you miss it?
«I miss it as a life experience. From submarines to aircraft carriers, I’ve traveled the world. It was a tough program, even on a professional level: it was a great school. But it was very demanding on a physical level. More than once I have risked dying ».

«For one edition I put myself in the” shoes of “and I put myself in those of the military. I did some simulations of ditching with the helicopter: I was stuck inside, luckily a navy raider saved me, otherwise I would have drowned. In the kitchen with “Cooked and eaten” everything is quieter. Now I register in slippers (laughs, ed) ».

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