The "laveggio" cooking pot

The term "laveggio" is believed (lèvèc’, lavèc’) to come from the Latin word lebes lebetis (basin, bowl) or from the adjective lapideus (of stone), which was distorted into lapedius or levedius.

At a time when soapstone craftwork was flourishing, the "laveggio" was the only cooking pot to be used in the households of the villages along the Alpine range. In the Valmalenco, every family had at least one set ready for use. The smallest pot (surpignȫ or campanèla) was used to make coffee; the medium size (the ters) for babyfood and for milk; the medium-large one (the segùnt) for game and the largest (tèsta) for soups, minestrone, tripe, etc. In addition to these, many families also had a very heavy pot for polenta.

Nowadays the "laveggio" is valued for its thermal properties: it heats slowly, it is convenient for cooking without the food sticking to or burning on the bottom and it maintains the organoleptic qualities of the food intact. Once removed from the heat, it cools just as slowly and keeps the food hot for a long time. Leftovers can also be left in the pot for several days without any change. In fact, when they are reheated, they taste even better. This property is due to the composition of the stone.

The best dishes cooked in the "laveggio" are stews, braised meat, roasts, game, the pàpa, the soup made of milk and the local taròz.

They also made other saucepans and containers ciapùnfrom soapstone: the "stufino"", particularly suitable for making stew; the furàgn, a container used to keep cheeses, butter, animal fat and meat; the padèla del cic’, a container to cook a traditional food of Chiesa, the cic’, a sort of bread made with maize flour; the bièla di gnoch, a soup bowl in which gnocchi and pasta were seasoned.