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Nitza Villapol a treasure of Cuba.
Many treasures saves Cuban cuisine, between recipes, modes and fashions, but in memory a name that is remembered for several generations is kept: Nitza Villapol.
At eleven in the morning every Sunday, the Cubans received a soft tune accompanied by a meticulous and clear woman who explained how to prepare a dish for the family.
Cocina al minute tv show was the on the air for more than four decades accompanying everyone. But her host Nitza, she did stay, as an intrinsic part of the culinary culture and the treasures that the nation keeps.
He also worked on the radio and along with those on the small screen made it hugely popular. The books on cooking that he wrote were sold in an unusual way, her collaborations in the written press were cut and kept by the regulars to his art.
Her popularity was not only because of the recipes and the novelty of the screen, but because she took her work very seriously and went beyond recipes to sneak through the recesses of the economy and diet. ¨ You do it for love, because I truly believed that cooking is a minor art that is part of the culture of the people¨, she said.
Cocina al minute: record Guiness?
Many say that their program could be based on the Guiness record book because it was 44 years accompanying viewers. In the world it was only overcome in ancient times Meet the Press, of the North American television NBC.
Yes, it was a longer program, but nobody was as long as she was a conductor. Her closest contender would be the journalist Lawrence E. Spivak, who spent twenty-seven years as a panelist or conductor of the aforementioned space.
Nitza Villapol was a charismatic woman with a strong presence and talent, so it is, without a doubt, another treasure that hides the island. Very cultivated, an aspect she showed when UNESCO commissioned her to write the chapter on cooking in the book Africa in America, published in several languages and with a dozen editions.
It has been qualified by experts as the personality that has most influenced the dynamism and updating of Cuban cuisine, and, above all, the very difficult task of modifying the country’s eating habits. In the 90s the tv show disappeared, it was a mistake, but despite that she continued her work, wrote and published new titles, and they were sold with the same success as always.
However, little by little, people stopped missing her, when she died in 1998 she was not paid the homage she deserved.
Newyorker by birth, Cuban for love of the most beautiful island in the Caribbean, Nitza studied until she became a Doctor in Pedagogy in 1948. She deserved the Distinction for National Culture.
Nitza expressed that the kitchen actually became Cuban when the chickpeas were removed from the ajiaco, when the domestic servant assumed the kitchen of the whites and when the rice became a basic cereal at meals. The need for a sauce to dip rice, fried things and pastries mark the Cuban wherever you are.
He came to the culinary culture more than fifteen titles, thousands of radio and television programs and countless press columns, such as the one he had for years in the Cuba Internacional magazine that had it until the end among his most distinguished collaborators.
Nitza Villapol died and will always be a reference when preparing a dish, with his good humor and expertise, but above all, with the culinary treasure that flowed from his imagination and good taste.