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The best food from Italy

Italy has undoubtedly one of the best cuisines in the world, so it would be a shame not to try everything they are famous for. Let's take a look at the Italian cuisine and the top dishes you need to try.
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It would be a crying shame to visit Italy, and not try the food that makes it so famous, because after all when you try these dishes at the source, they cannot get any better, so we are here to give you an overview of the Italian cuisine and the absolute must-try dishes, for your trip. There are of course the most famous foods that we all have heard of, and then there are some local ones which vary by region, and that is where a local ‘Destination Expert’ can come in very useful because they can give you the inside scoop into the best local delicacies and top secrets of Italian cuisine. 

With that in mind, here is the best food from Italy, and the dishes you must try.

Italian food could be talked about all day long, and probably all week long if we are honest because it is full of endless possibilities, that vary from region to region, however, it is always nice to leave some things as a surprise, so we will get you inspired by a list of some top Italian dishes you might have already heard of, and some perhaps not.

Pizza:

The best food from Italy

It is highly unlikely that many people in the world have never heard of a pizza we are pretty sure that you could travel to the end of the earth and always find a slice of pizza, and that is thanks to Italian immigrants. Over the years, many Italians have emigrated to all corners of the globe, taking their beloved recipes with them, and this has made them world-famous, for good reason.

Pizza, originated in Naples when basic flatbread was topped with many different ingredients and became the pizza we know today, however, the actual word ‘pizza’ has existed since 997 AD, from a town called Gaeta, which existed as part of the Byzantine Empire. 

The pizza, is known to be a quick, cheap, and extremely tasty meal, in Italy and all around the world, however in Italy, the traditional pizza is the Margherita, and locals tend to like their pizza as original as possible, and you will certainly know why, when you try it at the source.

Pasta:

The best food from Italy

There are so many kinds of pasta that hail from Italy, and they can all be used to create a variety of different dishes, some of them include tortellini, ravioli, spaghetti, penne, linguini, fettuccini, and tagliatelle, to name but a few. There are around 350 types of pasta, and many of them have multiple names, so it can all be a little overwhelming, nevertheless whatever you choose will be incredibly tasty. 

It is highly recommended to take a cooking class when in Italy to learn more about the food culture here and to gain some great cooking skills to take home, and one way of doing this is but taking part in a tour, such as this Food and Motor Tour, which incorporates, food, cars, and history.

Fiorentina Steak:​

The best food from Italy

If you are a meat lover, you might have heard of this exquisite steak known locally as Bistecca Alla Fiorentina, which comes from the region of Tuscany. One of the best ways to try this very delicious steak is at a local home, so if you get the opportunity, you must accept the invitation, because almost every home cook in this region knows the secrets to making this delicacy. 

What makes this so rare and so good, is that the meat comes from Chianina cattle- an ancient Tuscan breed, which is seasoned in local spices and grilled over hot coals, before serving rare.

Gelato:​

The best food from Italy

Gelato, can be found almost everywhere in Italy, and is the perfect choice for after dinner, or while strolling around sightseeing in the sun. The authentic gelato that you will find in Italy, is so good because it contains just 6-10% butterfat and 70% less air and more flavor, than other frozen desserts, which makes it denser and richer, and of course much more delicious.

Focaccia: ​

The best food from Italy

It is said that the traditional ‘pizza’ started as a focaccia style dish and evolved from there to become what we know today, complete with tomato sauce and various toppings, however, the focaccia still stuck around and it has proved to be just as popular as its dough-based sibling. Focaccia can be found everywhere, and with various ingredients such as garlic, herbs, rosemary, olive oil, and sundried tomatoes.

Lasagna:​

The best food from Italy

Another world-famous Italian dish is the lasagna, which can be found on almost every international menu across the globe. Nowadays these can be made vegetarian, vegan, or gluten-free, but the traditional recipe calls for ground meat in tomato sauce known as ragu, bechamel sauce, and layers of lasagna pasta in between. If you want something truly authentic, you must try a lasagna, as it is said to be the oldest form of pasta in the world, and it is worth noting that the recipe differs from region to region, so don’t just stop at one lasagna tasting.

Italian Cheese:​

The best food from Italy

Italy has some of the most delicious cheeses in the world such as Buffalo Mozzarella, Parmesan, Asiago, Burrata, and of course Ricotta, but there are hundreds of varieties which come from different regions of Italy, so be sure to give them a try too. Pair with freshly baked bread, prosciutto, or Parma ham, and extra virgin olive oil, this is an amazing appetizer.

Olive Oil:​

The best food from Italy

It is no surprise that Italy is the second-largest producer of olive oil in Europe and the world, considering they have been producing olive oil for centuries, and their olive groves cover 1 million hectares of land across the country. Olivie oil plays a huge part in the Mediterranean diet and is a very nutritious ingredient to add to salads and dishes, of course, the olives themselves are so fitting as an appetizer paired with meats, bread, and cheeses.

Desserts:​

The best food from Italy

When it comes to Italian cuisine, you just cannot visit Italy without trying some of their most famous desserts, such as Tiramisu, Panna Cotta, Cannoli, and of course Biscotti. Every Italian meal should be finished off with a dessert and an espresso.

Italian Wine:

The best food from Italy

Considering Italy is the largest producer of wine in the world, it is your duty (if you drink the wine of course), to try some of the world’s best varieties. Every region in Italy produces wine, and Italy has some of the oldest vineyards in the world, so finding a place to go wine tasting will not be a hard task. Some of the best varieties to try are white: Trebbiano, Vermentino and Pinot Grigio/ red: Aglianico, Nebbiolo and Dolcetto. 

Why not be inspired by this food and wine tour which incorporates some wine tasting in the region of Puglia.

Italian Coffee:​

The best food from Italy

Italy is renowned for its delicious coffee, and you will find coffee shops and even vending machines with great coffee all over the country and on the islands of Sicily and Sardinia, after all, they take their coffee seriously. The most common type is the espresso, which many locals drink in the morning, and after most meals, but you might also be familiar with Caffe Latte, Caffe Mokka, Cappuccino, and Latte Macchiato, all of which are available around the country.

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