This is an excerpt from the book “Südtirol and Dolomites”.
Made in Alto Adige (Südtirol in German), especially Val Venosta, Speck dell’Alto Adige, or country bacon, traditionally is smoked over a wood fire and then cured for an average of 20 to 24 weeks. Genuine speck must have a rind that is well marked, and should be slightly firm to the touch.
Flavored with herbs and spices, its smoky taste makes it excellent in pasta sauces (tagliatelle, speck and chanterelle mushrooms, for example) or in dishes with meat or eggs.
And if there’s no time to cook, pair a generous slice of speck with a few cucumbers, a spoonful of horseradish sauce, and a glass of Blauburgunder, the pinot noir wine produced in the Alto Adige region.
Beer in Italy? Alto Adige, with its crystal clear water from the Eastern Alps, became an ideal area for the production of birra, which began here as early as the 900s.
Although few of the traditional small breweries still exist, several large companies, such as Forst, still produce millions of gallons of beer, in a range of brews, yearly.
Beer is growing in popularity in Italy, as more and more people are discovering that it can rival a glass of red wine with pizza or antipasto.
Trentino – Alto Adige typical foods include:
Biroldi con crauti: blood sausages stuffed with chestnuts, walnuts and pine nuts, flavored with nutmeg, cloves and cinnamon, served with sauerkraut.
Blau forelle: trout poached in white wine with vinegar, lemon, bay leaf and clove, served with melted butter.
Carne salata: beef marinated for a month or more in brine with juniper berries, pepper and herbs, eaten either sliced raw or cooked in butter and served with beans or polenta
Gemsenfleisch: chamois Tyrolean style with red wine vinegar, salt pork, herbs and sour cream served over toasted country bread.
Orzetto or Gerstensuppe: barley soup with onion, garlic, vegetables and herbs simmered with Speck‹eaten in both provinces.
Leberknoedelsuppe: dumplings of bread crumbled and mixed with flour, milk and eggs and flavored with chopped calf’s liver and herbs served in broth.
Minestra di trippa: Trento’s tripe soup with onion, carrot, celery, garlic, potatoes, grated bread and tomato sauce.
Sauresuppe: Tyrolean tripe soup with onion, herbs and nutmeg soured by white wine vinegar.