Allow us to introduce our newest graduate assistant, Lucia Austria. She’ll be helping out with this oh so marvelous blog, as well as supporting program events and special projects.
Lucia has long been intrigued by food and culture. “My parents are Filipino immigrants, and my interests in food and culture sprouted from my family’s love of their native cuisine,” she says. But after earning a degree in business from Boston College, Lucia realized she would rather be on her feet and work with food than sit in an office. Inspired to change course, she attended Le Cordon Bleu in Cambridge, Massachusetts and then worked as a cook for a year. She began the Gastronomy program in 2010, while finishing her externship at The Gallows in the South End.
Her primary interest is food history, focusing on Spanish colonial foodways in the Philippines. She explains, “There’s a lot of literature on Latin American foodways shaped by past European pursuits, but there’s little done on the foodways of Spanish Philippines. I think there’s a lot that can be discovered and understood about the foodways during this era in Philippine history, and how it has influenced the consumption habits of Filipinos at home and abroad.”
Currently, Lucia puts her love of working with food to, well, work at Taza Chocolate in Somerville where she is as an artisan Chocolate Maker. After graduation, she hopes to pursue her research goals in the Philippines and Spain.