Italy is more than its food, but let’s face it, the country’s gastronomic repertoire is delicious. There’s a reason Italian cuisine is the most popular on the planet; you can find an Italian eatery or pizzeria in every town on the planet. The real deal? That you’ll only find in Italy.
Traveling through Italy with your taste buds is the most thrilling way of getting to know the country’s customs and traditions. You get to meet the people behind your favorite dishes too! Here are the most famous dishes in Italy.
Of course, you know pizza, but in Italy, your favorite delivery food is something else. Pizza is originally from the coastal city of Naples, in Campania. Here, pizza has been a specialty since the year 1000AD.
Authentic Italian pizza is always thin and crispy, and it’s made with the highest-quality ingredients. According to The True Neapolitan Pizza Association, every pizza must be topped with peeled, crushed tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella, fresh basil leaves and drizzled olive oil, that’s it. Pizza is cooked in incredibly hot wood-fired ovens. Each pie is ready in just 60-90 seconds!
Tuscany is more than fine wine and rolling hills dotted with Italian cypress trees. The region is known for its comforting food that includes lots of soups, legumes and pasta. There is, though, a dish that will swoon meat lovers off their feet, the Bistecca alla Fiorentina.
This grilled specialty is an impressive one-pound, 3-inch thick T-bone steak sourced from the bulky, local Chianina cow. The crust is nicely charred but cut it through to discover the most tender and juicy pink meat. This is the most awe-inspiring steak in Italy, perhaps the world!
Linguini al Pesto Genovese
Pasta is a big deal in Italy; we all know that. What you might not know is that there are over 350 different pasta types — they’re authentic regional specialties! It’s hard to choose only one pasta dish, but if we have to, it would be the aromatic and fresh Linguini al Pesto Genovese.
Liguria is a thin strip of land overlooking the sunny Mediterranean sea. Here you’ll find the most fragrant basil that together with pine nuts, extra virgin olive oil, Pecorino and Parmigiano Reggiano, become the matter of dreams. Literally, a pasta dish to die for.
Pasta alla Norma
Sicily is a southern Italian island, and it’s well known for its hearty food. Here, food is almost a religion, and amongst the region’s most popular dishes, you’ll find the meaty and colorful Pasta alla Norma.
This peculiar maccheroni dish makes fair use of ripe, grilled eggplants or aubergines topped with tomato sauce and ricotta salata and fresh herbs. This is the ultimate vegetarian dish, and despite being made sans-meat, it’s incredibly meaty.
With a glass of local Nero d’Avola, this is a meal to remember, worthy of visiting Sicilia alone.
Ending with a sweet treat, we must talk about the glorious Tiramisu. A specialty in Northern Italy, this layered cake is made with ladyfinger biscuits soaked in Italian espresso and topped with sweet mascarpone and a fine layer of cacao powder.
Authentic decadence and infinite pleasure infuse every bite or real Tiramisu, which you’ll only find around the cities of Verona and Venice. More complicated than you might think, this sophisticated dessert has it all — it’s creamy, spongy, bitter-sweet and delectably chocolaty. What else could you ask for?
What’s Your Favorite Italian Meal?
Whether it’s pasta, pizza or a silky risotto, there’s something in Italy for every palate. There’s no one Italian cuisine but many. It seems every region, every town and every household has its specialty. Of course, you’ll have to visit to believe it.
Enjoy your favorite Italian food with your friends and family and experience the most comforting and heartwarming meals in the world. Ok, there’s more to Italy than its food, but you know what they say, ‘The people who give you their food give you their heart,’ so, let Italy win your heart!