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VEGETABLES AND PULSES
Globe artichokes are cultivated throughout Italy and grow wild on Sicily. Naples is credited with the first cultivation and, nowadays, they are regarded as a Roman speciality, being served twice deep-
Originally regarded with great suspicion, aubergines (eggplants) are now integral to Italian cooking, especially in the southern part of the country. They may be cooked in a wide of variety of ways and add depth of flavour and colour to many dishes.
Haricot (navy), cannellini, borlotti, black-
chick peas and other pulses are eaten all over Italy, although Tuscans are renowned for being bean-
Widely used in northern Italian cooking, courgettes (zucchini) combine well with many other typically Mediterranean ingredients, such as tomatoes and aubergines (eggplants). They may be served cold as an antipasto, stuffed or deep-
Also known as Florence fennel, this aniseed-
Sweet red onions are delicious raw and add colour to cooked dishes.
White onions have a stronger flavour and yellow onions are mild-
Capsicums or sweet (bell) peppers are invariably sun-
Now enjoying a rediscovered popularity in Britain and America, rocket has never lost favour in Italy, where it grows wild. It is also cultivated, but the home-
Spinach and its close relatives Swiss chard and spinach beet are used in a wide variety of Italian dishes. Anything described as alla fiorentina is likely to contain it. Young leaves are eaten raw in salads and spinach is typically paired with ricotta in pasta and pancake fillings. It is also
classically combined with eggs, fish, chicken and veal.
A huge variety of squashes, from tiny butternuts to massive pumpkins, are used in northern Italian cooking for both savoury and sweet dishes, including soups, risottos, stuffed pasta and dessert tarts. Deep-
Many different varieties of tomatoes have been grown throughout Italy since the sixteenth century and it is difficult to imagine an Italian kitchen without them.
Plum tomatoes are probably the most familiar and they have a firm texture that is less watery than other varieties, which makes them ideal for cooking.
They may be served raw, typically partnering mozzarella cheese and fresh basil in an insalata tricolore, and are used to add both colour and flavour to a range of dishes. Italian tomatoes are always sun ripened and have a truly unmistakable flavour.
These days, commercially produced sun-
Is a pulp made from sieved tomatoes. It has a strong flavour and may be fine or coarse. It is useful for soups and sauces and can be used as substitute for fresh tomatoes in slow-
|Rice And Grains|
|Vegetables And Pulses|
|Basic Tomato Sauce|
|Basic Cheese Sauce|
|Italian Red Wine Sauce|
|Italian Cheese Sauce|
|Pizzas And Bread|