Valtellina – Food and wine – good cuisine – mountains

Valtellina - Food and wine
Springtime in Valtellina

Valtellina – Food and wine: an extraordinarily land, rich in unique traditional products.

Just go and taste them, discovering the close relationship between its wines and the terracings on which they originate. Discover the link between its cheeses and the mountain pastures over 2.000 meters where animals graze free, or between the bresaola and the traditional preservation practice by salting and drying the meat. It’s a pleasant journey to discover Valtellina’s wine and food. Apples, honey and pizzocheri, emblems of Valtellina’s cuisine, are not to be missed.

In Valtellina your holiday is not completed if you don’t taste the products of the cuisine.

This land’s gastronomic history is strictly linked with the country environment and the rustic tradition. The popular pastures cheeses – Bitto and Casera– are perfectly combined with Valtellina’s unique wines, one of them, for insance, is Sforzato.

Bresaola and pizzocheri (black flour noodles) are other symbol products of this land. They represents the ideal beginning for a pleasant journey to discover many other food joys, the valley’s apples and honey.

Pizzzoccheri della Valtellina
Valtellina – Food and wine: Valtellina specialties

There are the traditional recipes and the right places where to taste them. Here are some suggestions.

Sciatt Small pancakes made from black flour, filled with Casera cheese. In Valtellina’s dialect they means “toad”. It’s a bizarre name for their irregular shape served with salad and a good glass of red wine.

Chisciai is Tirano’s area traditional specialty. It uses black flour. It is not as popular as pizzocheri and sciatt. A kind of very delicious focaccia bread or pancake prepared with Valtellina’s original local products.

Bisciola Valtellina’s rustic cake made of nuts, figs and raisins, served as is, or with vanilla sauce, or with a sauce from Braulio, the Valtellina’s renowed liqueur. It might be an ideal sweet to bring back home to recollect the savours of a special holiday.

Goat Violin

Goat Violin The most typical specialty in Valchiavenna. The Violin is a mature and smoked ham which obtained from the leg or the shoulder of the goat. To slice it as if playing a musical instrument put it near the neck and use a knife instead of the bow.

Prosto Biscuits For hundreds and hundreds years it has been a very popular product on Valchiavennasche’s tables. Simple ingredients- wheat flour, sugar and butter- have combined togheter by the Del Curto’s family with an incomparable result. Packages usually handmade with a special colored paper wrap.

Rye bread Forget rosetta bread and white bread. A ring-shaped black cake, rye bread represents the most popular food on Valtellinese cuisine, usually slightly covered with white flour. It matches perfectly with salami and cheeses. With jam and honey too.

How to make Pizzoccheri – a video instruction

Taroz Valtellina’s traditional dish is of vegetables from the mountains. A single dish composed of mashed potatoes mixed with beans and French beans abundantly seasoned with Valtellina’s butter and cheese.

Crotti Cellars vaults formed under the stone blocks caused by landslides. From here the “sorel” blows, a constant temperature draught, which contributes to the wine ripening and to the aging of cheeses, salami, and hams. You find them in Valchiavenna, open to the public, are restaurants with a genuine cuisine.

Text courtesy of Provincia di Sondrio Ufficio Turismo

Slatt Valtellinesi – Photo © Il Giorno Sondrio
Valtellina – Food and wine: Specialty local food in the time of the virus

Piuro (Sondrio), 6 April 2020 – The food excellence of the territory directly at home. Cooked local specialties or raw materials are delivered at home, this is “Crottdelivery”, the initiative of two of the famous crotti of Valchiavenna, the Crotto Ombra i Pratogiano in Chiavenna and the Crotto Belvedere di Prosto in Piuro, which reopen their doors with gnocchi chiavennaschi, sciàtt and chischiàtt, manfrigole with slow food presidium cheese and ribs with lavècc.

Not only supermarket products during the pandemic era, therefore, at least for the municipalities of the Italian Bregaglia (Chiavenna, Piuro, and Villa di Chiavenna). An excellent example of how to safeguard an ecological agri-food supply chain that has almost stopped due to quarantine. The Slow Food della Mera, the Municipality of Piuro and precisely small agricultural and commercial realities in the area are actors, together with the three slow food outlets of the Storico Ribelle, the Furmacc del Feèn and the Goat Violin of the Valchiavenna.

A second step along the interesting road, in fact “for some weeks now a home delivery service for cheeses, meats, honey, and jams have been activated, promoted by the Slow Food Convivium of the Mera together with the Municipality of Piuro – explain Salvatore Tomacci and Omar Iacomella, respectively Slow Food convivium leader and Mayor of Piuro”. So the initiative is now more complex so that you can “receive at home, in conditions of total safety, high-quality products, born from the care for the territory and respect for the environment and animal welfare”.

Continue your visit to Milan and Lombardy

William Dellorusso
Lombardia in Cucina: The Flavours of Lombardy

Milan-style risotto, pizzoccheri Valtellinesi, and pumpkin tortelli to start; casoeula, Milan-style cutlets, frogs stewed in tomato to follow, and to send, a slice of sbrisolona cake or panettone.
Lombardy surprises with the richness of its culinary traditions and natural ingredients, which modernity has barely affected.
"Milano in Cucina" captures this kaleidoscope of flavours, with contributions from some of the most celebrated chefs on the culinary scene, who pay homage to their territory, and whose skill is able to present a modern vision in keeping with the region's progressive spirit.

The Italian Academy of Cuisine
La Cucina: The Regional Cooking of Italy

Fifty years ago, a group of Italian scholars gathered to discuss a problem: how to preserve traditional Italian cooking. They formed the Italian Academy of Cuisine to document classic recipes from every region. The academy’s more than seven thousand associates spread out to villages everywhere, interviewing grandmothers and farmers at their stoves, transcribing their recipes—many of which had never been documented before. This is the culmination of that research, an astounding feat—2,000 recipes that represent the patrimony of Italian country cooking. Each recipe is labeled with its region of origin, and it’s not just the ingredients but also the techniques that change with the geography. Sprinkled throughout are historical recipes that provide fascinating views into the folk culture of the past. There are no fancy flourishes here, and no shortcuts; this is true salt-of-the-earth cooking. The book is an excellent everyday source for easily achievable recipes, with such simple dishes as White Bean and Escarole Soup, Polenta with Tomato Sauce, and Chicken with Lemon and Capers. For ease of use there are four different indexes. La Cucina is an essential reference for every cook’s library.

Milano in Cucina: The Flavours of Milan
The famous Risotto Alla Milanese gets its golden hue from the precious spice saffron. Legend has it that the dish came about when a Milanese painter decided to gild the risotto served at his wedding banquet with a harmless gold-colored dye. In Milan, they traditionally serve Risotto Alla Milanese with ossobuco (braised veal shank).
Traditionally made with raisins and candied citron, or with a creamy cream filling, the light, fluffy brioche-like bread called panettone may be tall or short, covered with chocolate or flavored with various liquors, but it’s always a symbol of the Christmas season.
With its hallmark domed shape, panettone graced Christmas tables in Milan since at least the 15th-century. Common knowledge claims its invention is from Milan. It is the most famous Christmas Lombardia food.

The Pax side of the Moon featuring Cesareo
Lombardia (Dicon tutti che sei mia) Quarantine Version - feat. Cesareo (Quarantine Version)

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