Food the Heart of Italy


June brings us to the beginning of our Cuisine travels to the 20 Regions of Italy. The recipes will reflect foods produced from which they spring. We will begin in the North, down to the South of the boot ending in Sardinia.  Look at the Boot Logo, locate The Trentino-Alto Adige Region. This a region that is split into two provinces. Around the city of Trento to the south, the language and culture has long been Italian, where as in the Alto Adige, around the city of Bolzano to the north, the region has absorbed the German culture. *Recipes will reflect both cultures in harmony with one another.

Lydia Matticchio Bastianic, is an Italian/American celebrity chef, television host, author, and restaurateur specializing in Italian/American cuisine. I will be referencing many of her recipes in this column. * I am also urging readers of the La Voce Italiana  to submit and share recipes from your Italian family. ” Food is a connector to everyone’s roots to their past in different ways. Food gives one security, gives one a profile of who they are, and where they come from.” This is quote from Lydia Mattuchio Bastinich.

Featured Recipe:  Insalata Paesana   ( County Salad)  Serves 6

1 pound cauliflower                                                                   1/2 cup toasted coarsely chopped walnuts

3/4 pound small red potatoes ( 3 or 4)                                 1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 large or 2 smaller firm, crisp apples                                   1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

8 small radishes                                                                        3 tablespoons cider vinegar

1 cup- 1/4 inch diced of red onion                                          1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley

8 ounces Italian Asiago ( rind removed -cut 1/4 cubes( you may wish to substitute any favorite cheese)

  • Recommended: large bowl for dressing, salad, and mixing
  • Fill the pot or saucepan with 3 quarts water, and heat it to boil.
  • Tear off any tough leaves at the base of the cauliflower ( reserve any tender leaves and cut out of the core.
  • Break or cut the large branches into small florets, drop them ( and any tender leaves) into the boiling water, and cook until tender, about 5 minutes.
  • Lift from the water, and drain well in a colander-when cool, put florets in the large bowl.
  • As soon as the cauliflower is out of the pot, return the water to a boil and drop in the potatoes.
  • Cook them at a gentle boil just until a knife blade pierces the center easily—*don’t let them get mushy.
  • Drain and briefly cool the potatoes; peel them while still warm, cut into 1/4 inch dice, and put them in the serving bowl with the cauliflower.
  • Peel and core the apples, cut into 1/4 inch dice, and add to the salad bowl.
  • Trim the radishes, quarter them in wedges, and drop into the bowl along with the diced red onion, cubes of cheese, and toasted walnuts.
  • Sprinkle the salt over the salad pieces and toss
  •  Drizzle the olive oil over the salad and toss; sprinkle on the parsley, toss once more, and serve.

                      DELIZIOSO !!!

Wines from this region: Dominated by local Lagrein and Schiava grapes.

Suggestions: 1.) Fratelli Lunelli Ferrari Chardonanay

Torentino wines– are a co-operative mixture of local and foreign grapes.

Sparkling wines: Pinot Grigio Bianco or Weiflurgunder  ( German name because of region location – close to – *Austria.

2.) Bordeaux Blend Wine

3.) Santa Margherita Red

*** For more research on wines from Trentino-Alto Adige region check the internet: www. Torentino Wine

Locally found at: 1) Jungle Jim’s

2.) Party Source in Belview, Kentucky

3.) One Stop Liquor in Newport, Kentucky