DaVinci Wine Cookbook: page 3 [of 10]
‘Localvore’ may be a term we use in other parts of the world; in Italy eating local is SO normal, applying the term ‘localvore’ would be both useless and redundant. Each region of Italy has its specialties---or shall I say vehement preferences? In Tuscany you eat Pecorino, Parmesan hails from the Emiglio Romagno region and Mozzarella di Bufala is further south than you realize. When we first arrived in Vinci, we enjoyed ‘bistecca fiorentina’ which is a famous cut of steak (T-bone up to 3 inches thick), drizzled with oil, salt and pepper then cooked to perfection. Tuscany alone owns the ‘bistecca’ bragging rights.
Ragus are made differently in each region (all claim to be the best, the original), a lot of Italy includes seafood in their diet (their country is surrounded by coastline) and not all olive oil/tomatoes/olives are created equal---it depends what part of the country food is grown and in what microclimate. Tuscans eat a lot of wild boar, seafood and beef. Different regions clamor to their unique pasta specialty; near Vinci we ate a lot of ravioli, paparedelle and pici pasta. Tuscan salami is considered sweeter than salami that hails from Bologna. And the list goes on and on.
Even in our short time in and around Vinci, Italy, we ate a lot---a LOT---of food. These ingredients/foods/drinks were common to our experience and are traditional to the Montalbano region of Chianti (though this is far from an exhaustive list):
Basil. Parsley. Sage. Rosemary. Bay Leaf. Thyme. Pancetta. Prosciutto. Salami. Wild Boar. Rabbit. Beef. Chicken Liver. Shrimp. Mussels. Squid. Clams. Pecorino. Ricotta. Truffles. Olives. Radicchio. Arugula. Spinach. Zucchini blossoms. Tomatoes. Mushrooms. Eggplant. Asparagus. Artichokes. Cantaloupe. Watermelon. Canellini beans. Garbanzo. Pici pasta. Paparedelle. Ravioli. Risotto. Polenta. Unsalted Bread. Baguettes. Olive oil. Sugar. Eggs. Cream. Mascarpone. Honey. Flour. Salt. Wine. Grappa. Vin Santo. Espresso.