We like to introduce you to some of the most authentic dishes that honour traditional, centuries-old recipes you would find in different areas of Italy. Our new monthly regional menu features give you the chance to explore dishes strictly linked to the culinary tradition of a specific territory that you could otherwise only experience by visiting the area where they come from.
This month, enjoy specialities from Liguria - home to Pesto, Portofino, Cinque Terre and the city of Genoa. While Liguria’s coast is certainly its most famed attraction, the landscape of this region is diverse. Rising sharply above the sun drenched-beaches is the Alpi Liguri (Ligurian Alps) making this climate one of the rarest meetings of alpine and coastal ecosystems in the world. Liguira's geography is most definitely reflected in its culinary traditions, although fish is the main character, meat is also featured in many traditional recipes. It seems only fitting then that we present you with two dishes that represent this region of contradictions.
Bruschetta Ligure alla Pissalandrea is a recipe from the milder Ponente of Liguria (Coast of the Setting Sun), specifically from the Imperia region. Historically dedicated to the admiral Andrea Doria (1466-1560), who loved anchovies. The versions of this famous dish are many, but the recurring ingredients are a pizza base, onions, tomatoes, anchovies, taggiasche olives, and oregano.
Ravioli al Tocco di Carne - homemade ravioli stuffed with ricotta and Swiss chard, with braised meat sauce - comes from the city of Genoa itself and while we don’t usually associate Liguria with meat dishes, you will find this recipe served in almost any trattoria in the city. Called Ravioli au Tuccu, in the regional dialect, 'Tocco’ in Italian means “piece" - inspired by the traditional way of making the sauce by braising a big piece of meat in tomato sauce until it's tender. Historically, the sauce was served with ravioli filled with cheese and wild bitter greens and the piece of meat was served as a main course later. One of the most ancient versions of this recipe on record is from the famous violinist Niccolo Paganini (1782-1840) from Genoa. In his letter to his friend Luigi Germi, The legendary violinist was giving the recipe of the "raieu co-o tocco", (Ravioli with the piece"), his favourite dish.
Learn more about Liguria in our latest issue of Terroni Magazine and visit any Terroni location this month to immerse yourself in the flavours of this region.