Born: Geelong, VIC
History: My love of cooking has been instilled in me since the age of five, when my mother taught me to make gnocchi, it was so much fun that I couldn’t wait till the following Sunday to learn more.
I have to thank my mother Antonietta Liburdi, my grandmother Antonietta Liburdi and my aunty Luciana Orsetti for teaching me the art of making traditional Roman dishes; gnocchi, fresh pasta, lasagna, minestrone, suppli, saltimbocca etc. My family migrated from Italy in the early ’60’s and continued to cook traditional Italian meals at home.
My father Franco insisted that we speak only Italian at home and thanks to him, I am fluent in the language. At the age of six my mother taught me to read and write Italian and at high school I studied the Italian language.
Have you always wanted to be a Chef?
I have always enjoyed cooking and feeding people and decided to qualify as a chef in 2008. My mum passed away in early 2007 and 6 months later I decided to start my own little business - Cooking Confidently with Liz; teaching traditional Italian cooking and sharing my mum’s recipes. I had a recipe book full of mum’s recipes and I really wanted those recipes to live on through future generations.
How would you define your style?
Obsessive compulsive about?
All things food. I have bookshelves full of cookbooks and cooking magazines, I watch all the cooking shows possible, I even dream about food. I enjoy eating good food.
Your greatest culinary inspirations?
My hero is Maggie Beer who as a cook has become a successful restaurant owner and TV personality. I have been to her farm/shop in South Australia and it is beautiful. I have never met Maggie, but on TV she comes across as such a happy and bubbly person, obviously because she is doing what makes her happy.
Most 'eyebrow raising' menu item?
Bigne’ al cioccolato - house made profiteroles filled with chantilly cream, covered in couverture chocolate and served with berry coulis and vanilla ice-cream.
Signature dish: Gnocchi alla sorrentina. Potato gnocchi tossed in napoli sauce, topped with bocconcini and parmesan cheese and oven baked until the cheese melts through the gnocchi.