With the huge range of sweet and savoury flavours in Italian cooking, it’s no wonder that Italian dishes are so popular in the UK and across Europe. Many menus in the UK and Ireland will include at least one pasta dish, and it’s always a favourite.
Don’t forget, though, that good Italian food goes beyond spaghetti bolognese and lasagne, and serving that with chips is a very British idea!
Rice is not an ingredient very often associated with Italian food, but these delicious stuffed rice balls are determined to change that. They are coated with breadcrumbs and then fried to give a tasty, crunchy finish. Mozzarella or ragu are the most common fillings for these balls, and as with many pasta or pizza dishes, there are distinctive regional variations.
Once the food of servants in Milan, Ribollita is now considered a regionality speciality for Tuscany. It is made with unfinished food, traditionally bread and vegetables, that is then boiled thoroughly.
If you still have room once you’ve eaten your main course, Dublins Italian restaurant, Toscana, recommends you try this honey-based, sticky, creamy candy dessert. It does contain nuts, and is dipped in melted chocolate for a teeny taste of heaven, creating the perfect finish to a meal.
We know that Italians do ice-cream well, but they are also pretty good at other desserts. Give yourself a “caffeine hit” with this mouthwatering pudding made with coffee, cocoa and sugar. The original recipe is very popular around the world, but increasingly there are various options available such as fruit or chocolate, and even honey versions.
Finish your meal with a special cup of Italian coffee. Rich, strong, and with an authentic taste all of its own, a cup of coffee will give you the buzz you need to keep going, or an excellent excuse to slow down and catch up with a good friend in your favourite Dublin Italian restaurant.
Gino D’Campo and the Guardian newspaper outline their tips for cooking healthy Italian dishes, for those who want to replicate some authentic Italian dishes at home.
If all this talk of delicious Italian food is making you hungry, don’t delay – book yourself a table at your favourite Italian restaurant, and try something new.