Italian Regional Food
Most non Italians consider all Italian food to be the same, pasta and pizza but nothing could be further from the truth. Good authentic Italian restaurants such as La Costa in Pattaya
serve dishes that are truly Italian inspired with authentic ingredients.
Italy has a vast array of cuisines that are regionally based and created by different influences, either history or location. In this blog we look at the most famous regions and what food is their speciality. For instance the coastal areas of say Sicily are famous for delicious seafood
, whereas the mountainous regions of the north have many French influences.
Towards the south of Italy is Calabria and the dishes here celebrate the area’s classic elements. Eggplant was introduced by the Arabs who were regular visitors to this part of Italy between the 9th and 11th Centuries.
Calabria is famous for cured meats, often spiced with chili pepper. Also Ricotta salata which is a creamy dried sheep’s milk cheese.
This region in which Naples is located they love their carbs, and it is not surprising that the white flour of the pizza base is loved. Pizza Napoletana is a thick-rimmed pizza cooked in a wood-burning oven, traditionally with toppings of mozzarella, and tomato sauce.
Many of the famous restaurant pasta dishes hail from Bologna and its region Emilia-Romagna. Favourite dishes are baked and layered lasagna, and tortellini and tortelloni that hail from Modena.
Lombardy is the home of risotto, which is a carb loaded primo course made out of rice, stock, wine and garlic. Risotto Milanese has the addition of bone marrow and saffron to add exceptional flavour.
Puglia is known as the south of Italy’s bread basket. It is a flat and fertile region that produces wheat and olives in abundance. This region is great for vegetarians due to the delicious variety of food grown.
The most northern region of Italy is Trentino and it was once a part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Both cooking and occasionally the language is heavily influenced by Austria.
Strudel can be found here a rich mix of apples, pine nuts, raisins and spices all wrapped up in a calorie loaded pastry.
Tuscany is a tourist’s delight and one of the most rural areas of Italy. Its food heritage is deeply rooted in its farming traditions. Here you can find Gnudi
, which is a sort of ravioli without the pasta sheet that encloses the filling.
Umbria takes many influences from the many woods and forests that dominate the landscape. Game such as wild boar is extremely popular and so is the earthy and expensive black truffle.
Even more prized is the white truffle which can be found in late autumn, which can produce the sublime tagliatelle with truffles.
These regions are just eight of the twenty that make up Italy, all have their own specialities and together create one of the greatest cuisines of the world.