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Gianluca Ginoble talks about his favorite dishes – Italian Cuisine

Gianluca Ginoble talks about his favorite dishes


With his family or by a great cook. Better in the mountains of Abruzzo. For Gianluca Ginoble of the Il Volo musical group these are the unforgettable dishes

Even if I had kept a diary, as was once used, I would be able to list everything I have eaten since, at the age of fourteen, I started traveling around the world with Piero and Ignazio, my companions of all time and everything: the stage, the jokes, the serious things. I've really eaten everything from Japan to Vietnam. However, I believe that I would not have a palate as eager for adventure if I had not grown up with my cuisine, that of Abruzzo, born from a rough land that makes a virtue of necessity and teaches the strong flavors of sheep, entrails, mountain herbs. And temper the character and taste. Also thanks to my grandfather Ernesto, who was the alto horn of the Montepagano band, the oldest inhabited center in the municipality of Roseto degli Abruzzi, and took me with him on trips for events and patronal feasts in the surrounding villages. So for someone like me, who leads a wild life, memorable lunches are not those in famous clubs but those with the closest people at the table with whom you laugh, toast, joke. And remember.

All together, it wasn't easy

Being able to have mum Leonora, dad Ercole, grandfather, brother, cousin at the table is always a kind of bet. But a few weeks ago I won it. The idea was to ignore the convenience of the fish restaurants that abound in Roseto degli Abruzzi where I live and head towards the interior where true Abruzzo cuisine is still made. Everyone agrees in booking at Rosy, in San Gabriele dell’Addolorata, the name of the restaurant and of the cook, who has been in the kitchen for almost fifty years. An hour and a half of driving and here we are seated. You know those sixties trattorias where Sunday lunch was celebrated? Friendly, familiar, with the mistress who went over for the encore of the first courses and at four in the afternoon were you still sitting at the table? Here.

Silence falls

We started with bruschetta with ventricina, ham with a knife and the initial toast with Montepulciano d’Abruzzo. Then the gnocchi alla boscaiola, Rosy's specialty, with meat, peas and mushrooms. As happens when things are really good at the table, silence has fallen. I also allowed myself a taste of spaghetti alla chitarra with meatballs and ragù sauce. Without problems. In this period, with the tours moved to 2021, I go to the gym four times a week and eat a protein diet. The mother, who cooks very well, enjoys satisfying my requests for sushi and exotic condiments, as she did with my brother Ernesto in the months in which he immersed himself in the vegan experience. Then Rosy brought the triumphal mix of grilled meat: grilled lamb, mutton kebabs, pork belly, with their side dish of baked potatoes and vegetables. It will be Montepulciano d’Abruzzo, but every time at this point grandfather Ernesto is moved: "I can't believe it: it was the sixties, I was looking at Modugno in Sanremo, and now you are as famous as he is". Then it was the turn of the "sweet pizza", the dessert that makes the party here: layers of sponge cake dipped in alkermes, cream, chocolate.

To close, the amaro

Grand finale with gentian liqueur, the very bitter digestive that everyone makes at home with a secret recipe. On the way back, the guide was slow and cautious and on Sunday, as in the past, it ended in quiet happiness. This is my memorable lunch to date. But perhaps, if you had asked me in a few weeks, I would have told you what I am about to do in Val di Sangro, in Casadonna, by Niko Romito, our flagship chef, with whom we met at Porta a Porta by Bruno Vespa , to celebrate the most famous people of Abruzzo of the year. I already know it will be memorable.

Siena: students' favorite trattorias – Italian Cuisine

Siena: students' favorite trattorias


A selection of the best places to try the authentic Sienese cuisine. Perfect not only for university students

If I do this job today it is also because I studied (and ate) for years in Siena. Here, in fact, I approached the culture of food, the world of agriculture, the historical reality of the trattorias and taverns of the past. The following are in part those of my heart, where we students used to go; others are the preferred ones today, others are eternal or have changed one or more management over time. In short, an anthropologically diverse universe, where everyone, hopefully without controversy, will find their own. And if you have others to recommend, you just have to point them out: returning to this city will always be a pleasure.

Poppi Pizzeria

Let's start from the beginning. The first gastronomic experience that you must have in Siena is absolutely the ciaccino. It is about the simple typical Sienese focaccia, stuffed with cooked ham and mozzarella (which is addictive), to be eaten hot while walking down the street. It is also found elsewhere, but this one a stone's throw from the wonderful Piazza del Campo is the mother address.

Osteria del Gatto

In this case, I'm biased, because Osteria del Gatto has always been and continues to be my favorite place in Siena. A simple place, with a handwritten menu and dishes that vary continuously, but with some fixed points such as pappardelle alla Duilio, meatballs or loin with honey. Not least the special evenings that Marco, the host, organizes: such as those of fish or my beloved ones Lebanese dinners!

Antica Trattoria Papei

This is the temple of the students, who here know they can find the certainty of local tradition at affordable prices. And then we are in one of the most beautiful spots in Siena, in Piazza del Mercato, sitting outside on the outdoor tables. Don't miss a classic from Siena (and from Papei): le tagliatelle with wild boar sauce, as well as other meat dishes.

Permalico Osteria

In the historic center, a new management that proves to be a guarantee for those looking for typical Sienese cuisine, but not only. Try the huge boar meatballs, the caper leaves in brine and the various salads of the day. And all at an excellent value for money.

Taverna of San Giuseppe

For many it is the best restaurant in Siena. In any case, it is a wonderful place, obtained from a 1100s fund, with an Etruscan house dug into the tuff and staked by hand, now used as a cellar. Go there for an important occasion or in the case of students, as a reward, perhaps after taking 30 cum laude or a good grade in an exam (that's what I did).

Osteria the Skyscraper

It is the oldest tavern in Siena, which opened in 1840 continues to be a point of reference both for students and professors, as well as for tourists, locals and travelers. Here the menu cannot be read, but you look directly at the counter, and changes every day according to the products available and the wishes of the owners, former university students. The name derives from the fact that by raising your arm you can touch the ceiling of the room, since it is an extremely small place… Try it!

Fontebecci Pizzeria

If you feel like pizza, no problem: in Siena there is also this. In addition to various types in the center, we advise you to leave the walls to go to this pizzeria in the Stellino area, Acqua Calda, which has been preparing a Pizza Respectable Doc (word of the various Campanians who study in Siena).

Osteria da Trombicche

A stone's throw from Piazza del Campo, this place is worth a stop, where you can find authentic Sienese cuisine, from cold dishes such as panzanella and cutting boards, to hot ones, like their unforgettable ribollita. Here you can eat almost always: lunch, snack, aperitif, dinner. In short, just like at home.

Orto de 'Pecci

Perhaps not everyone knows that Siena is so beautiful and unique that a few steps from the wonderful Piazza del Mercato, in the center of the city, you find yourself immersed in the countryside. It is the Orto de 'Pecci, where since 1983 a social cooperative deals with the inclusion of disadvantaged people, who come from marginal situations: ranging from the care and management of the park and the vegetable garden, to that of the restaurant, with a pizzeria and bar (where garden products are consumed).

Company of Vinattieri

Also in this case I am a little biased, because I celebrated my graduation lunch at the Compagnia dei Vinattieri. Hoping that nothing has changed over time, I still remember excellent le handmade tagliatelle with duck sauce, as well as other meat dishes. And it seems that in recent years they have started organizing Japanese evenings every Monday and Tuesday …

Osteria Le Logge

"If you come to Siena, go and eat at the Brunelli's." Yes, the Lodges are a real institution, a place where intellectuals, politicians, artists, gastronomes, writers have gathered for years (note some important dedications hanging on the walls). Opened in 1977 by Gianni Brunelli and his wife Laura, today it is in the hands of Mirco Vigni and Agostino La Sorte in the dining room, while in the kitchen there is chef Nico Atrigna who prepares delights.

Orto & a Quarto

In a region like Tuscany, where the cuisine is mainly meat, worthy of note is this restaurant which in addition to the classic traditional Tuscan game menu, has flanked a choice of vegetarian and vegan dishes. The location is wonderful: Orto & a Quarto, in fact, is located in an ancient agglomeration of ancient peasant houses, on the hills of olive trees just outside the city, immersed in the Sienese countryside, with a large outdoor terrace overlooking Siena.

The Biondo

Active as a restaurant since 1936, it is one of the oldest places in the center of Siena. For some years it has changed management, making people talk about it especially for the dishes of fish, especially starters and tartare, at affordable prices. And perhaps, in the city, there was a need.

Osteria La Sosta di Violante

At the beginning of via Pantaneto, a stone's throw from the Faculty of Letters and Philosophy, is this historic tavern, much loved by students. The absolute must-try Pici, the classic Siena pasta, similar to large thick spaghetti, usually seasoned with various ragù; and the meat, especially the cut.

The Ficamaschia

This name derives from a cod that is usually fried, typical of Porto Ercole, in the Argentario, where they also organize the festival in his honor. Here, however, it indicates a cuisine mainly of fish, starting with the aperitif (which seems to be increasingly popular and loved by students).

Boccon del Prete

I have to admit that I haven't been back to Boccon del Prete for years, but I still remember his ravioli with pecorino cream and its pici with almonds. From what I know, the historical owners Guido and Luciana have sold the business to two young people who worked with them, to whom they have slowly passed the trade over the years.

Cecco tavern

In a slightly hidden alley in the center of Siena, a few steps from the Piazza, a historic trattoria, complete with tables outside, where you can find traditional local dishes. You are spoiled for choice, but in any case, here too try the pici, tortellini alla Cecco (with sausage and cheese), but also the excellent penne with salmon, for a real dip in the nineties.

Osteria il Vinaio by Bobbe and Davide

As the name suggests, you can drink well here, with solo the best of local wines, which certainly are not lacking in Chianti. Not least the careful selection of raw materials and the preparation of Sienese dishes, especially those based on legumes and vegetables (produced by them).

Tea Room

It is not a trattoria, but it is still one of the favorite places for students in Siena, one of the meeting points, the most intimate and romantic places there is. How many couples were born or made a date here for the first time? How many friends have told each other, do you confide? Perhaps only the owner knows, that an infinite variety of teas are served in this warm and welcoming place, accompanied by delicious home-made cakes.

Outside Siena

But the beauty of staying in Siena is also going out of the city, the classic trips out of town, where just a few kilometers away you are already in the heart of areas such as Chianti (go absolutely to Carlino, in Gaiole). In a few minutes a north, for example, you are in the small medieval village of Monteriggioni, where there is the historic Bar dell’Orso or Il Ceppo, where you can eat at all hours. Going towards Grosseto, instead, that is in the direction south, near the Terme di Petriolo (another student must), there is Casal di Pari, with that fantastic timeless place that is the Trattoria da Rosanna (its fries are unforgettable). In Sovicille, a west, Donato and Donata, of Calabrian origins, deserve a stop, a point of reference, especially for lovers of grilled meat (and not only). TO East, towards Arezzo, there is San Gusmè, where everyone has known Sira and Remino, since the sixties.
In short, what are you waiting for to pick up and leave for Siena?

Eggplant Parmigiana, Churchill's favorite – Italian Cuisine

Eggplant Parmigiana, Churchill's favorite



Churchill and the eggplant parmigiana.
In Churchill 1944 he was often a guest at Naples by General Maitland Wilson, supreme commander of the allied forces in the Mediterranean, who carried him with the admiral's spear to Ischia, Procida, Capri and Sorrento.

He wrote, painted and adored the Neapolitan sunset. But it was not only the landscape that enchanted the prime minister, but also the Neapolitan cuisine, of which he especially loved the eggplant parmesan and macaroni alla puttanesca seasoned with oil, tomato, garlic, capers, Gaeta olives and parsley.

Here the version appreciated by the statesman.

1 Wash the aubergines, remove them from the baby, peel them and cut them into 1/2 cm thick slices. Arrange them on a cutting board alternating them with coarse salt. Tilt the cutting board by placing an object under it and arrange it so that the vegetation water can drip into the sink; leave it like this for 2 hours.

2 Meanwhile, wash basil and tomatoes. Cut the latter into chunks and let them drain in a colander for half an hour. Then cook them in a saucepan with the chopped onion and a handful of basil leaves until soft. Pass them in the vegetable mill and put them on the fire again, making them thicken well: add salt at the end (do not add oil). Set aside 3 tablespoons of sauce and mix the rest with the eggs, shelled.

3 Slice the mozzarella and let it dry on kitchen paper. Rinse the aubergines, dry them and fry them in plenty of hot oil; drain them on kitchen paper and salt them a little. Arrange the 3 tablespoons of sauce kept aside on the bottom of an oven dish and whip the parmesan alternating layers of eggplant, egg sauce, parmesan, chopped basil and slices of mozzarella: take care to finish with sauce and parmesan. bake at 180 ° for 45 minutes. Let it cool down and complete with a little basil.

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