NEWS > COOKING HOLIDAYS > COOKING TRADITIONS
COOKING TRADITIONSIf you are planning to visit Italy, you cannot neglect its cooking tradition because Italian food speaks volumes of the present and past history of the country. Each Italian region has specific characteristics: dialects, landscapes, the climate and most certainly the cuisine. If you are interested in discovering the tradition and knowledge lying behind food, the Eatalianists will tell you the story of each dish we will cook for you and will guide you through the typical dishes available in our menus. You can also attend our cooking classes and we will teach you how to cook your favorite dishes to impress your friends and family once you are back home!
Umbria and Tuscany are nearby regions and some of their areas are quite similar too. However, proximity to the sea rather than to the mainland results in many differences when it comes to typical food.
Legumes, cereals, pork and all its by-products, truffle, extra-virgin olive oil and bread without salt undoubtedly belong to the Umbrian cuisine. The tradition to cook bread without adding salt to the dough dates back to the so-called “Salt War” when Umbrian people rose up against the Pope who imposed a tax on salt in 1540.
Tasting the dishes that we will prepare for you, you will discover the taste of Umbrian tradition through panzanella, torta al testo, our special Easter savory cake, porchetta (special roasted pork) and our selection of vegetables. Hand-made pasta is typical throughout Italy but Umbria stands out from the crowd for its tradition to prepare it with black truffle from Norcia, wild-boar meat and goose sauce.
Finally, you will discover the typical desserts of the Umbrian tradition like torcolo, ciaramicola, fave dei morti, frittelle di San Giuseppe, rocciata, salame del re, zuppa inglese, frappe and strufoli.
Yes, we know. Most probably you have never heard of these strange names but all you have to do is browse the pages of our website to learn about them or, even better, reserve an Eatalianists dinner and we will be happy to explain you the history and origins of the recipes we make. And if you want to learn how to cook them, you just need to join our cooking classes!
On the other hand, Tuscan cuisine is mainly composed of traditional dishes and desserts whose preparation is unchanged for many years. In Tuscany as well, bread is made without salt. The story has it that this tradition dates back to the 12th century when the rivalry between the towns of Pisa and Florence was such the Pisa citizens decided to block the trade of salt. In Tuscany, bread is considered as a sacred product which should never be thrown away, not even when it is stale. A long series of recipes witness to this tradition which applies still today. Here are a few examples: panzanella, panata, ribollita, acquacotta, pappa al pomodoro, fettunta, vegetable soup and black cabbage soup. All these dishes are not only an integral part of our Tuscan menus but we also teach how to cook them during our cooking classes. Another cooking tradition of Tuscany that we included in our menus is the use of poultry and game. Tuscan country houses always have a big yard where chickens, turkeys, ducks, guinea-fowls and pigeons are free to scratch about. These products, along with rabbits and game such as hares, wild boars, pheasants and porcupines constitute the special menus of great feasts. Pork is much used as well. Just think about the famous Tuscan salami, cured salty ham, sausages and other special products like Buristo which, as many other, is the fruit of poor people’s ingenuity.
Talking about cheese, the tradition landmarks are Pecorino Toscano, Pecorino di Pienza and Pecorino Maremmano. Ricotta and Raveggiolo stand out among soft cheeses, which we use to match wine during our wine tastings.
We devote great attention to desserts from Siena like Panforte, the Zuppa del Duca (literally, the Duke’s Soup, that is a tiramisu), the Torta di Cecco and many others that you can discover through our menus or our cooking classes.