Buon appetito! The Best Food to Taste When in Tuscany

Friday, May 8, 2015

Buon appetito! The Best Food to Taste When in Tuscany

Posted by Virginie (08/05/2015)

Tuscany provides a smorgasbord of culinary delights for its visitors, with the region being well known for producing fine food and drink. Whatever time of year, those taking a holiday in Tuscany are exposing their taste buds to many a treat, from light snacks to hearty Italian meals. Whether wanting to cook from scratch in the kitchen of your rental villa, or debating which dish to choose from a rustic or fancy restaurant, be sure to try these delicious local Tuscan dishes whilst there.

Bruschetta is a simple Italian antipasto that you’re likely to find in any restaurant or cafĂ©. Traditionally consisting of grilled bread that has garlic rubbed into it and then topped with fresh tomatoes, olive oil, salt and pepper, you’ll often find places offering extra toppings including mozzarella, cured meats, and even vegetables.

A variation on bruschetta that is local to the Tuscan region is fettunta. Fettunta is a stripped back version of the dish and is grilled bread rubbed with garlic, drizzled in delicious olive oil, and sprinkled with coarse salt.

Both dishes are simple enough for you to create in your rental Tuscany villa. Simply pick up some fresh ingredients from the local market and deli for the toppings and see what you can create. The dish works incredibly well if using day old, or slightly stale bread.

Bistecca alla Fiorentina
Tuscany provides an array of meaty dishes including Bistecca alla Fiorentina. The dish is a steak seasoned with salt and olive oil that has been grilled over either a wood or charcoal fire. The thick and large T-bone steak is usually sourced from the Chianina or Maremmana cattle, which are local to Tuscany.  The steak is usually served very rare, accompanied by a glass of red wine and a dish commonly known as Tuscan beans that typically consists of a mix of white beans that are seasoned with garlic and sage.

Pappardelle al Cinghiale
A pasta dish that is local to Siena, Pappardelle al Cinghiale makes for a beautiful evening meal.  Wide strips of fresh pasta are served with a tomato based sauce and wild boar that has been marinated in red wine. The sauce is flavoured with chilli, rosemary, or nutmeg, and often contains onions and other seasonal vegetables.

No one does Gelato like the Italians. Visit any Tuscan city or town and you are likely to find a gelateria with a vast array of spectacularly colourful iced treats. It’s not simply the taste that amazes visitors to Tuscany but also the choice. Flavours range from traditional pistachio to bubble gum and most gelaterias lavishly decorate their gelato with fresh fruit.

When it comes to gelato, we’d recommend that you experiment with flavour combinations, mixing light, fruity flavours like peach or grapefruit with the rich, creamier tastes of dark chocolate or almond. Don’t be afraid to ask for a sample either!

The region’s most notorious export is likely to be its wine. The climate is perfect for growing a wide variety of grapes, and each year Tuscany produces some delightfully enjoyable wines that are the perfect accompaniment to an evening meal, or lunchtime break. Head to the Chianti region to sample some of the most popular wines, but don’t forget to taste wines produced in Montepulciano and San Gimignano.

Adds the Flavour
Tuscany is known for creating food filled with rich flavours due to the locally grown or sourced ingredients. Visitors to the region who are just as interested in what goes into the food as they are about eating it will be pleased to know that there are plenty of food based tours and tasting sessions available. From olive oil tasting sessions, foraging for truffles, to attending your own Tuscan cooking lessons.

Whether you’re planning on spending every night dining out, or want to spend your time creating your own culinary masterpieces, why not take a look at our wonderful selection of Tuscany villas to find the beautiful setting for your Tuscan adventure.

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