Holidaymakers and Italians-by-choice alike enjoy Italian cuisine, which provides a vibrant glimpse into each region’s culture and traditions.
Fresh raw materials are combined in an extremely easy way in Italian cuisine. The easiest approach to uncover the most wonderful traditional Italian street foods in the boot is to seek out modest restaurants, trattorias, or osterias, and steer clear of trendy eateries with overly inventive and creative menus.
Here are ten meals (from north to south) that you must taste if you want to learn more about Italy’s traditional and traditional cuisine. We also provide recommendations for the greatest restaurants.
- Canederli – South Tyrol
South Tyrol, Friuli, and parts of Veneto in the northeast of the country are famed for their canederli, sometimes known as “South Tyrolean bacon dumplings.” They are akin to the German Knödel and are part of the “cucina povera” (poor cuisine).
They’re usually made with stale bread with bacon or other smoked pork meats. The ingredients include eggs, milk, parsley, flour, and onions. The dumplings are served with melted butter or in a vegetable broth after they’ve been cooked. This traditional recipe is ideal for chilly winter days.
2. Ossobuco alla milanese – Lombardei
One of the most famous beef meals from the city of Lombardy, Milan, is ossobuco with the classic saffron risotto alla Milanese. A veal shank with a hollow bone filled with marrow is usually served with olive oil, wine, spices, tomatoes, and rice or other vegetables in this renowned dish. Sucking the creamy, luscious marrow from the bone is the greatest part of this dish.
3. Lasagne – Emilia-Romagna
The history of lasagne can be traced back to ancient Greece, not Italy. This traditional Italian dish gets its name from the Greek word “laganon,” which refers to the first known pasta.
You must try a typical lasagne with ragout, bechamel sauce, and crispy gratinated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese if you visit the region around Bologna or Emilia-Romagna.
4. Focaccia di Recco – Ligurien
The focaccia, a well-known variety of bread, is a characteristic and traditional Italian street foods from the same-named town in Liguria. It’s a very thin bread baked with fresh cheese, wheat flour, salt, yeast, water, and olive oil that’s known as fugassa.
The European Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) designation protects Focaccia di Recco, making it the first Italian street foods speciality in the world to be protected by this EU trademark.
5. Ribollita – Tuscany
Florence is the birthplace of this traditional Italian meal. Ribollita was created by servants who would take their bosses’ uncooked Italian street foods from the kitchen and cook it in water to prepare supper.
This dish is inspired by Tuscan “cucina povera,” a basic and classic Italian cuisine. To make a creamy and tasty soup, this traditional stew is prepared with soft vegetables, potatoes, and beans with bread.
6. Spaghetti alla carbonara – Lazio
Spaghetti alla carbonara is a traditional Lazio meal made with everyday items such as egg, hard cheese (typically Pecorino Romano), guanciale (or pancetta), and a generous amount of black pepper.
Spaghetti, rigatoni, and bucatini are the most common pastas served with carbonara sauce. Avoid ordering the traditional Bolognese and instead, try something new!
7. Pizza – Campania
The core of Italian cuisine is pizza Napoletana. Although the preparation appears straightforward, producing a proper Italian pizza is a true art that takes more than a few basic components such as flatbread, tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, olive oil, and basil.
The Margherita pizza is the most well-known (and simplest) variant. According to legend, when Margherita of Savoy (then Queen of Italy) visited Naples in 1889, Neapolitan pizza maker Raffaele Esposito created this iconic Italian meal.
8. Burrata – Puglia
Burrata is Italian street foods that are essentially a mozzarella cheese filled with residual mozzarella strands and cream. Many cheese dairies in Puglia sell or serve fresh burrata, such as those in Bari, Martina Franca, Andria, and Corato.
This sort of cheese originated in the Apulian town of Andria at the turn of the twentieth century. Burrata should be consumed within 24 hours, or at most 48 hours, of manufacturing because of its freshness.
9. Arancini – Sicily
Arancini are a classic Trapani, Palermo, and Syracuse dinner or snack. These crunchy, golden rice balls come in a variety of flavours, the most well-known of which is the one with ragout sauce, mozzarella, and peas. Sicilian arancini are a popular street meal as well as one of the most well-known culinary icons of southern Italy.
10. Gelato – all over Italy
“Gelato,” like spaghetti and pizza, is already a part of the German lexicon to define traditional Italian ice cream. From Bronte pistachio to stracciatella and Buontalenti cream, the flavours are infinite.