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Tag Archives: Italian Food

Video: Things To Look Out For When Dining Out In Italy

Getting a taste of authentic Italian cuisine right from the source is always a major part of any trip to Italy. After all, Italian food is famous all over the world, and being able to sample the delightful local food is sure to be a wonderful and unforgettable experience. However, take note that there are several major differences in the way that food establishments are run in this country that could catch you off-guard and cost you quite a bit of money if you’re not careful. So here are some of those things that you need to look out for when dining out in Italy. In this video we prepared, we’re going to share some important lessons to keep in mind while touring Italy’s restaurants! First of all, don’t sit at a table unless you really must. Is there really a difference between settling down at a table at a [...]

Ten Facts About Gelato That You Ought To Know

On a hot summer day in Italy, nothing tastes quite as divine as a cold, sweet scoop of gelato. As one of the Italian food inventions that are loved all over the world, gelato actually has a history as diverse as the colors and flavors that it comes in. Here are just ten facts about gelato that you ought to know! The word “gelato” means “frozen” or “to freeze” in Italian. A gelato vendor is known as a “gelatai”. Gelato is made from fruit, sugar, and milk, and traditionally hails from Northern Italy. When you remove the milk and use water instead, you end up with a sorbetto which is a southern product. Gelato isn’t actually frozen as we normally know it, and compared to normal ice cream which is stored at 0 to 5 degrees Fahrenheit, is actually required to be kept at a slightly warmer temperature of 10-15 [...]

Taste of Summer: Quintessential Italian Summer Food

With the arrival of summer in Italy, there are many things that make the change in seasons particularly obvious. The temperature changes from cool to hot, the general pace of life in the country slows down as everybody’s mood shifts to one that is more relaxed, and people look forward to some well-deserved days (or weeks) of rest, recreation, and vacation, of course. In Italy, however, a country that passionately loves its food, this shift is also reflected in every meal and table, and the heavier and warmer winter food is replaced by the considerably lighter summer dishes. One of the main points of difference between winter and summer fare would be the method of preparation, because while winter dishes are more often than not boiled or stewed, summer dishes tend to be quicker and easier to prepare. This can be mostly attributed to the fact that nobody wants to [...]

Seven Dishes You Have to Taste in Rome

Roman food is a hearty, rustic affair with bold flavors and inexpensive ingredients that have their history in a less prosperous time. Despite its meager roots, signature Roman cuisine is renowned the world over for its great taste, filling nature and classy aroma. These are our picks for the seven dishes you have to taste in Rome. Pasta is Italy’s staple food. Estimates are that the average Italian eats roughly 60 pounds of pasta per year. Each region has its own typical shapes and sauces. Pasta in Italy is cooked al dente, which is slightly firmer than you might be used to. 1. Buccatini Amatriciana. Buccatini is a long, hollow spaghetti-like noodle and is usually served with an Amatriciana sauce. This classic Roman pasta sauce is made with tomatoes, onions, pecorino cheese and crispy guanciale, which is similar to bacon. 2. Cacio e Pepe. Cacio e pepe means cheese and [...]

Enjoying Italian Food in Bologna, a.k.a. “La Grassa”

It’s virtually impossible not to find delicious Italian food in Italy. But one city where the food is particularly wonderful, never mind famous around the world, is Bologna. Some of Italy’s best known foods, from mortadella — yes, the word “baloney” is a variation on Bologna! — to Bolognese sauce, are from Bologna. Bologna is a medieval city that is home to one of the world’s oldest universities and, in a surprise to many visitors, its own canal system and a leaning tower, too. Another distinctive feature of its arcades, or portici, arched walkways throughout the city. Two other staples of Italian food, Parmesan cheese and balsamic vinegar, come from the outskirts of Bologna, in the Emilia-Romagna region. We wanted to share this recent article from the newspaper the Guardian of 10 budget restaurants in Bologna. This is just the sort of article you should bookmark in the event that [...]

The World Loves Italian Food As Much As Italy!

My May issue of Bon Appetit Magazine arrived the other day, later than usual because I’d just started a subscription. On the cover (not shown, that’s a stock photo): an enticing bowl of pasta. On the top, in bright red letters, THE ITALY ISSUE. By coincidence, I was rearranging my cookbook collection, which includes a shelf of food magazines going back years. As I went through the magazines, I saw one cover devoted to Italy, and Italy travel. Saveur, Gourmet (RIP, oh wonderful one!), Taste, a magazine published by Williams-Sonoma at the turn of the millennium. So, why all this Italy attention? Because Italy travel sells! Because people love Italy! They love the food. They love Italy travel. Yes, Italy is the bomb! Of course, we know that. That’s why we’re here. I’m thinking this May issue of Bon Appetit has made way for the June issue but you can [...]

Chowhound Italy Board: Where the Serious Foodies Hang

One thing we like to do at Tour Italy Now is bring you the best of what’s on the Web. For anyone who’s planning a trip to Italy, or dreaming about one, a great place for sussing out seriously delicious restaurants in Italy is Chowhound Italy Board. For the uninitiated, Chowhound is one of the oldest online communities. It was started in 1997 by Jim Leff. He sold it to CNET.com in 2006. The site is grouped by locale and topic. I stumbled upon the Chowhound Italy board the other day as I researched places to eat before my trip to Italy, and had a great time clicking around threads started by people asking about the best restaurants in Rome or Milan or Bologna or, an ever-popular topic, the best gelateria in Florence or some other city. Someone asked for a suggestion for a wedding gift, a gift certificate to [...]

Italian Pizza – In Search of the World’s Best Pizza

Pizza When you think Italy, you think pizza. Pizza – a Taste of Tradition While the history of pizza is long and much debated, it is hard to argue that Italy claims the prize for the best place to eat the best pizza in the world. In Naples in 1830, the world’s first pizzeria, Antica Pizzeria Port’Alba, was opened. In 1889, King Umberto I and Queen Margherita of Savoy visited the City of Naples and in the Queens honor, a pizzaiolo named Raffaele Esposito created three pizzas, the favorite of the queen was the one evoking the colors of the Italian flag — green (basil leaves), white (mozzarella), and red (tomatoes). This classic combination is still known as a Pizza Margherita and you can try it at the Antica Pizzeria Port’Alba even today. Neopolitan Style Neapolitan pizza has a soft, thick crust and is cooked in a wood fired oven. [...]

Everybody Loves Italian Pasta: Part One

Last night I made orecchiette with green olive paste for dinner. Orecchiette, which means “little ear” in Italian, is from the Puglia region of Italy. The green olive paste I used is from San Remo. I added a smidge of butter and some Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, which of course is from Emilia Romagna, and, well, it was as if I’d bought a one-way ticket to Italian pasta heaven. The meal got me thinking about two cookbooks I’ve been meaning to buy, both about pasta. One is called the Geometry of Pasta, by Jacob Kenedy, the chef and owner of Bocca di Lupo, the acclaimed Italian restaurant in London. The book’s a minimalist affair, all black and white, that features the many shapes of Italian pasta, with recipes, tee hee, to boot. Check out the slide show on the book’s website HERE. For what it’s worth, my favorite Italian pasta of the [...]

Sicily, Cover Story in Saveur Magazine

On newsstands now: Saveur Magazine’s current issue focuses on Sicily, that scenic and alluring island at the tip of Italy. Sicily’s culinary riches span sweet and savory, from cannoli to caponata. Seafood is king, and the region’s wine is wonderful, too. If you aren’t familiar with Saveur, the magazine focuses on home cooking, home and abroad, it’s really worth checking out if you like to cook (and eat and travel!). Here are links to some of Saveur’s articles on Sicily: The Soul of Sicily. (With amazing black and white photos!) and The Freshest Catch: The Fish Market in Catania, Sicily. Of course, the articles include recipes, sweet and savory. I might just try this Sicilian Easter dish, Roast Leg of Lamb with Potatoes, or Cosciotto di Agnello con Patate, leg of lamb is roasted over a bed of potatoes. Tour Italy Now offers several vacation packages to Sicily. Click HERE [...]