Specialities & recipes

The refined palate

If you enjoy cooking, why not try to recreate a corner of Italy in your own home, putting your cooking skills to the test with some of the regional and local recipes published here: just follow the recipe (it’s important to have the right ingredients!) and add a sprinkling of imagination. The results will surprise you, even if it is not possible to entirely replace the ambience of a typical family restaurant in Italy, surrounded by the timeless quality of its familial atmosphere.

Risotto al barolo

This dish marries two much loved foods from the northern region of Piemonte: rice and local red wine.

"Pasta Ca' Muddica"

So called in the Sicilian dialect, the pasta with bread crumbs and anchovies, a recipe reminding the authentic taste of pastasciutta before the arrival of tomatoes.

Casonsei: Pasta squares with a meat filling

Part of the culinary tradition from the region around Brescia and Bergamo, this dish is easy to prepare. The pasta filling can be varied according to taste.

Il tipico panino fiorentino (www.mondointasca.org)

Lampredotto (beef stomach) with beans, oil, sage and tomato

The recipe of a tasty dish that fills the typical Florentine roll, once the only cheap protein for the poor ones.

Frico con le patate (www.wikipedia.it)


The most typical recipe of Friuli is probably this culinary delight made from carnico cheese. You can serve this dish as both a starter or a main course.

La famosa specialità  siciliana (www.comune.sanvito locapo.tp.it)

Fish Couscous

The recipe of the famous special dish of Trapani a town which delight its guests with sea fishes.

Stuffed anchovies

A speciality from Liguria with a strong taste. Serve as a second course.

Foto di Sandro Bedessi (Fototeca ENIT)

Swordfish Carpaccio

A simple dish of raw fish, excellent for those who love the smells and flavours of the Mediterranean.



This is one of the most famous and typical dishes from Florence, a sort of poor people’s vegetable soup.

Farciti con lo speck (www.speck.it)

Bacon dumplings (Knodel)

The ancient dish of bread and bacon dumplings known in the Tyrolese dialect as ‘knödel’ – or in Italian as ‘canederli’ - is synonomous with Tyrolese cooking, and in particular with the cuisine of the cities of Trento and Bolzano. It is famous for its creative use of stale bread and has its roots in peasant cuisine.

(www.girovagandoin trentino.it)

Tortèi di patate

The recipe for a typical starter from the Trentino region, especially the Val di Non that is ideal for Christmas dinner in either the savoury or the sweet version.

(www.consorziopampepato ternano.it)

Pampepato umbro

The recipe for the traditional typical Christmas cakes from Terni in the Umbria region, a bittersweet homemade bread to celebrate Christmas.

Risotto all’Amarone

Resulting from the union of rice and amarone, a wine produced in the Valpolicella near Verona, this unique risotto has become a favourite in many local trattorias.


Fontina Cheese Gnocchi

Typical dish from Valdaosta, gnocchi in a fontina cheese sauce are a nutritious main course with a decisive flavour.

Bigoli in a cream of green olives, cherry tomatoes and parmesan shavings

The traditional cuisine from the region of Veneto brings together the most original ingredients in a mix of traditional and new flavours.

Linguine al pesto, De Agostini Picture Library (Fototeca ENIT)

Trofie pasta with genovese pesto, potatoes and green beans

A surprising first course of pasta, patatoes and green beans blended with the delicate flavour of genovese pesto.

Zucchine al formaggio

This side-dish of baby marrows in a butter-cheese sauce is both creative and tasty and goes well with other traditional dishes from Abbruzzo.

Piadina: Flat bread from Romagna

It is impossible to establish one single recipe for this flat bread from Romagna. Flour, lard, bicarbonate of soda and sugar are the basic ingredients, but we have chosen one with olive oil and have left out the sugar. Some recipes substitute milk for the water.

Risotto all’Isolana

This traditional dish from Isola della Scala in the Po Valley south of Verona combines the rice from the area, vialone nano veronese IGP, with a meat sauce.


Abbacchio allo scottadito

This is one of the specialities from Rome with very old country roots which is always served at Christmas and Easter.

Reginette with tomatoes, basil and caciocavallo cheese

This pasta dish from Naples makes an irresistible first course.

Macaroni Timbales

This was one of the best loved dishes of the Neapoletan aristocracy and is, besides, both very elaborate and pleasing to the eye.


This traditional dish from Friuli is an unusual polenta (yellow maize meal) and spinach soup. Best during winter for its thick warming quality and delicate taste.

Tortellini from Valeggio with a sage and butter sauce

Tortellini have become the symbol of Valeggio sul Mincio, in the province of Verona, and are famous all over the world.

Pasta and beans

A typical Veronese dish, this internationallly famous recipe is obtained from the combination of beans and short kind of pasta like ditalini.

Farinata, foto di Massimiliano Navarria (©alexala)

Chickpea flat bread

A genovese speciality, dating to at least 2000 years ago when it was first served. Prepared with simple ingredients, it is a flat bread made with chickpeas, water, salt and oil.


Strascinati alla mamma

The recipe for this traditional first course from the Basilicata region, when the art of making homemade pasta was passed down from mother to daughter.



The recipe for a dish that cannot be left out at Christmas or New Years Eve. Lentils are considered as bearers of luck, wealth and prosperity and help to give a good start to the New Year.

Passatelli in broth

This simple soup is a classic from among the recipes from Romagna and the provinces of Pesaro and Urbino.


A family tradition since ancient times, tigelle are among the best known specialities of the Apennines near Modena.

Olive all’ascolana

This delicacy is traditional to Ascoli Piceno and is usually served as a starter followed by a consistent main course.


Insalata di rinforzo

A recipe for a Christmas side dish which is always served in Naples.

La pasta palermitana (www.terramadre.it)

Pasta with sardines

The recipe of the typical dish from Palermo, well-know in different versions in the whole Sicily.

Gnocchi di malga: mountain dumplings

A speciality from the Mountains of Lessinia (malga means a mountain pasture) in the Province of Verona. This simple recipe from Italy’s past makes for a tasty dish and takes only about 40 minutes to prepare.

(www.vogliadicucinare. blog.tiscali.it)

Sicilian Meatloaf

The recipe of a tasty main course, with bittersweet savours, heritage of ancient populations.


Peppered Mussels

Simple and tasty, peppered mussels are a traditional neapolitan dish. They can be served as a starter or as a main course.


A typical dish from Emilia Romagna.


Cenci (rags)

The recipe of the tipical Tuscan dessert to taste in particular at Carnival time.

Chocolate figs

A speciality from Cosenza. Wonderful if you have a sweet tooth. Beware however if you’re on diet.

Tomato Mush

The famouse recipe of the tuscan soup, launched in the sixties in a song.


A classical recipe in restaurants in the region of Alto Adige (Sudtirol), but the simplicity of the recipe also lends itself to home cooking.


Rustic savoury tart with pistachio and ricotta

The recipe of the most important dessert of Bronte, which reserves to pistachio the main role.

Chestnut soup

This soup is a variation of Pasta e Fagioli. It is typical of the area of San Zeno di Montagna on Monte Baldo near Verona, an area famous for its chestnuts.

Affunniatelle: omelette from Molise

From the hills of Molise all the flavour of a dish that bears witness to the importance of vegetables in the traditional cuisine of Campobasso and Isernia.