He pursued his passion for food before being a chef was ‘cool.’

In elementary school, Lorenzo Boni was the only boy to sign up for cooking class.

“At the time, being a cook wasn’t cool like it is today, ” Lorenzo remembers. “There was no Food Network or guest celebrities on TV.”

Becoming a chef wasn’t necessarily seen as a particularly lucrative profession either — but that wasn’t what Lorenzo was motivated by.

Just like the rest of us who find our calling to do what we love, he was motivated by one thing: passion .

Have a great, happy and fun Sunday everyone out there! Ciao! #cheflife #colander #hat #passionforpasta

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He’d always spent Sunday mornings watching his mother stimulate fresh tortellini or garganelli — pastas local to the Bologna region where they lived — and when the family came home from church, they’d all enjoy a delicious family dinner induced entirely from scratch.

Many Italian people out there will recognize this as the age-old tradition known as the, capital-letter, “Sunday Dinner. “

Instead of playing on a football squad, Lorenzo helped his papa cook for the professional team he loved. This offered him the chance to meet his idols face-to-face.

He also helped his dad throw huge dinners for friends.

When he wasn’t helping out in his parents’ kitchen, he was at his grandfather’s bakery, sneaking bites of warm tarts and other treats, as he watched them transform from dough to magic.

“I just really loved food and spend time with my family, ” Lorenzo says.

Artichoke, leek and Parmigiano cheese tart! Who is in? #feedfeed #foodporn #foodculture #cucinaitaliana #parmigianoreggiano

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He went on to become the only boy in his family to attend culinary school.

His brethren became dentists and accountants.

And fueled by his deep-rooted passion for food, Lorenzo went on to have a highly successful career.

He cooked in a number of Michelin-starred eateries across Italy and eventually opening his own eatery in Italy.

Chef Lorenzo Boni in the Barilla test kitchen in Chicago. Image via Barilla, used in conjunction with permission.

And, today, he’s the executive heads cook at Barilla’s North America test kitchen in Chicago , where he is in charge of all recipe development for Northern america.

Taste-tester may be a chore we all joke about when we snatch a forkful off a friend’s plate, but it’s serious business in the real world.

Creating recipes for Barilla’s websites, social media accounts, and the quintessential back-of-the-box recipes we all love comes with serious responsibility.

Image via Barilla, used in conjunction with permission.

“It’s so different every day, ” he says. “When I had my eatery, it was a very good business, but I wanted to be able to travel, to meet new people, new cooks. That’s what I missed.” Plus, he gets to develop recipes for passionate celebrities for the YouTube show “While the Water Boils” with Hannah Hart.

Chef Lorenzo Boni’s spaghetti recipe with cherry tomatoes and basil. Image via Barilla, used with permission.

He also gets to teach kids how to cook, as his exam kitchen has a series of cook class for children from disadvantaged neighborhoods.

“We have been working with different organizations with the goal of inspiring children and their families to expend more time in the kitchen, ” he says. The goal is simple: teach them to cook healthier foods and encourage them “have meaningful time around the stove and the table with family and friends.”

After all, it was this time in the kitchen with family that helped Lorenzo discover and fuel his passion — and now, he wants to share that elation with others too.

Image via Barilla, used with permission.

“I am happy I can share my love of food with American children, just like my father and grandfather did with me, ” he says. “Those are memories that they are able to stick with me forever.”

Lorenzo has also mastered the art of professional food photography and he utilizes it to share his passion for food with an even wider audience( of all ages ), including the Passion for Pastaaudience online, as well as tons of Instagram adherents.

When it comes to following your passion, Chef Lorenzo says it’s important not to be distracted by specific, long-term goals.

What matters most is that what you do now .

“Follow what your heart is telling you to do. Just go for it.”

Make sure to visit: CapGeneration.com