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South Tyrol to taste! – Salt and pepper – Italian Cuisine


Quality mark

South Tyrol? A wunderkammer natural unrollingto among the tumultuous courses of the Adige and the Isarco, between the Dolomites and the Natural Parks where nature has unleashed all its imagination to create an inimitable terroir. It is here that unique natural products are born, such as speck, apples, cheeses, marked "Alto Adige" and awarded from the European Union of the IGP mark (Protected Geographical Indication). Ready to become protagonists of robust snacks, tasty snacks, refined preparations.

176479A real specktacle!

That the speck has a glorious past is beyond doubt: along the Adige and Isarco's "he" valley, in fact, it has been spoken since 1200, when the Corporation of Butchers gave precise instructions on its preparation. Which included precise and unchanging operations of salting and smoking so that the speck is still produced according to the traditional rule "little salt, little smoke and lots of air". And so, if you really want to label it in a definition, Speck is a slightly smoked and seasoned raw ham. The choice of the raw material is obviously the basis of the quality of Speck Alto Adige PGI because only carefully selected pork thighs are used to produce it. The actual processing involves eight very precise steps: from boning to smoking (which is done by preparing a fire of wood that is not very resinous, so as not to give Speck a too strong flavor), to exposure to the brisk air of the South Tyrolean valleys to maturing that lasts on average 6/7 months. And the Bauernspeck? Is it peasant speck, as the literal translation wants, obtained from selected pigs and reared in small herds left in the semi-wild state in the masi of the innermost valleys. In addition to the thigh, in this case, other cuts (coppa, shoulder, carré, pancetta) are also used in order to exploit all the parts of the animal, as tradition dictates.


The bumps, the hills, the fields are an endless expanse of trees full of trees golden bright yellow, granny smith intense green and very red red delicious. We are just over 46 ° north latitude, on what can be called the "parallel of apples" and that of South Tyrol is the largest orchard in Europe, which extends over a hundred kilometers long the Adige, from the Val Venosta to the Bassa Atesina with an area of ​​about 18,500 hectares. 300 days of sunshine a year, abundant spring rains, a usually mild summer and autumn give the area the ideal conditions for growing apples up to 1,000 meters above sea level. The unique climate, combined with controlled agricultural practices, natural and ecological make grow thirteen varieties marked IGP mature: from the famous Fuji, Gala, Golden Delicious and Granny Smith to the most niche apples like the Braeburn, the Winesap and the Idared. Every year, according to data, about 1 million tons of apples are harvested, equal to 10% of the entire harvest in the European Union. And as far as organic food is concerned, South Tyrol is also one of the Union's largest suppliers: around a quarter of organic apples in Europe come from here.

Perfectly informs

It can be said that all the cheeses South Tyrolean quality standards are exceptionally high: artisanal production, non genetically modified and controlled feed and fodder, the natural breeding techniques and strict controls on milking and processing milk are the secrets of this success. Among the protagonists of the tableau de fromage South Tyrolean figure, no doubt, it Stelvio PDO, the only South Tyrolean cheese to have received the European Union Protected Designation of Origin. A historic product of the province (it has been talked about for at least a century), it is a cheese made from fresh cow's milk from 300 alpine farms, almost all located at over 1,000 meters above sea level. The maturing of the forms takes place on fir wood boards and lasts 62 days, during which the cheese is constantly massaged with salt water. To this brine are added autochthonous microorganisms that further strengthen the character of the cheese. Only in this way the Stelvio PDO can have its typical crust and its unique taste. That's not all, of course: the Stelvio is produced without the use of genetically modified organisms, a condition that also applies to the rennet needed for protein coagulation.

Enrico Saravalle
June 2019


The 10 best recipes with pumpkin flowers | Salt and pepper – Italian Cuisine

The 10 best recipes with pumpkin flowers | Salt and pepper

Fried in batter, stuffed, baked in the oven, ingredient for risotto or condiment for pasta, omelettes and savory pies: the color of the sun peeps at the table arm in arm with the flavors of the garden and those of the sea, we are talking of course courgette flowers: unmissable in the summer!

THE courgette flowers, even though they are so called, in reality, these delicate flowers also come from zucchini; the latter are distinguished as feminine, attached to zucchini, and masculine, sold in bunches but both are edible, the former are sweeter, the others more decisive. The flowers of pumpkin they are also larger than those of courgette and have a more robust “robust” corolla: for this reason they can be filled more easily. In the local markets you find them in abundance in the summer season, however you can find them in the supermarkets even in winter, among the spring first fruits.

THE courgette flowers they are the cross and the delight of those who have a vegetable garden but also of those who buy them in abundance because they must be consumed immediately, otherwise they deteriorate easily: you already know how to clean pumpkin flowers or how to cook them? Click here!

Pumpkin flowers are a food rich in properties and nutrients such as carotene, retinol and vitamin A; they have a low caloric content and a high quantity of water (about 90% of the flower) and mineral salts, so they are perfect for those who follow a low calorie diet, they also stimulate diuresis and rebalance the body: they are a real cure!

When the flowers are very fresh, they don't smell but… they are tempting and give light to your dishes! They can be cooked in many ways and there are plenty of recipes that require consumption without cooking. The most traditional way to consume them is fried in batter, even if it is not such a "healthy" preparation, I am a real delight, either simple both stuffed for example Ligurian style or to the Roman!

If you want to feel less guilty and want to avoid frying, you can always choose to stuff the pumpkin flowers and cook them baked, in this case delight with vegetable-based fillings, cheeses or even legumes!

If you cut i pumpkin flowers in strips with scissors, you can use them to prepare a quique, one tatin or one omelette or you can add them raw in a rich salad: they are a light, fanciful and colorful dish or an unusual side dish for a meat or fish dish

For those who love light first courses, pumpkin flowers cook in a pan in a flash and create delicate sauces to flavor spaghetti, linguini or lasagna really tasty summers. Like zucchini, pumpkin flowers are perfect to be combined with seafood flavors, with i shrimp or the bottarga but also with the salmon. But if today you don't really want to be in the kitchen, i raw pumpkin flowers, cleaned and blended together with basil leaves, pine nuts, a generous handful of cheese and extra virgin olive oil, are perfect for preparing a special and unusual variant of traditional Ligurian pesto, to season a pasta dish on the fly. If you prefer, rice instead of pasta, then choose to prepare a delicious and delicate risotto with pumpkin flowers or theorzotto with zucchini and zucchini flowers: easy to prepare and with a delicate flavor, perfect as a first course for your family and friends on any occasion

If you are looking for new ideas and ideas to prepare i courgette flowers, discover with Salt and pepper these 10 recipes super sweet tooth to prepare pumpkin flowers with success. Read this top ten of recipes with pumpkin flowers, try them all! We are certain that you will find your favorite: they are Salt & Pepper recipes all simple to prepare but so tasty!

Risotto with cheese and pepper, between the Duomo and the Colosseum – Italian Cuisine

Risotto with cheese and pepper, between the Duomo and the Colosseum

Inspired by the flavors of two great Italian cities, a creamy and fun dish that conquers everyone at the first taste

TO Milan the risotto it is a serious matter and a Rome, when it comes to cheese and pepper, don't mess around. But you eat. With closed eyes, to savor the cream, the balance between savory and spicy and also to feel at home. Given the importance of these two recipes, we thought of a possible marriage: the risttotto caccio e pepe. We guarantee that it will give you a tasty taste of Italy, surprise you with its creaminess and pamper you with the taste of authentic things. Preparing it is easy, here are the ingredients and the procedure.

The recipe of the cheese and pepper risotto

Ingredients for 4 people: meat or vegetable broth, 250 g Carnaroli rice, 50 g butter, 30 g onion, 150 g young pecorino romano, dry white wine, olive oil, salt

Procedure: Peel and finely chop the onion, then put it to dry in a saucepan together with two tablespoons of oil. Add the rice and toast it over a high heat then sprinkle it with half a glass of wine. As soon as it has evaporated, pour a ladle of hot broth into the saucepan. Stir and continue cooking the rice over medium heat, adding more broth from time to time, until it is used up. Season with salt and stir in butter and grated pecorino. Grind plenty of black pepper and serve hot.

The extra idea

If you want to prepare it in a gourmet version, proceed with the recipe until creamy and create a sauce with pecorino and broth separately, imitating the classic technoca of the cheese and pepper. Place the risotto in the dishes and place the spiral cheese sauce on the risotto with a teaspoon, after having enriched it with plenty of ground black pepper.

If you love crunchy

This preparation is very creamy and lends itself to a crunchy note. One of the best ingredients to do this is the classic bacon to be chosen cut very thin that we will heat in the pan before serving the risotto and we will place it on top of the plate like a wafer.

In the gallery above, 7 recipes cheese and pepper not to be missed

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