Sydney Italian Festival
Risotto and the Veneto Region Italian Food
With so many different Italian food dishes it is hard to pick a favorite. However, for those who like risotto, Veneto is the region for you! Italian food varies greatly by region with each area presenting their own unique dishes and flavors. One of the most recognized Italian food dishes is Risotto and because of that Veneto is a must stop region for those travelers in Italy wanting to taste some excellent Italian food. Risotto is most simply a rice dish cooked very precisely. It is one of the most commonly ordered appetizers at Italian food restaurants. Yet for its amazing popularity, it is also one of the most common Italian food dishes to be botched.
The key to a good risotto is to first cook the rice briefly in olive oil or butter. It should be cooked until it is evenly coated and begins to turn translucent. After that, broth is added to the rice slowly, one spoonful at a time. The most defining quality of a risotto is that the rice is toasted. If the rice isn't toasted than it's not a risotto, no matter how fine the Italian food restaurant is that you're in.
There are many different variations on risotto because it can be made and served with so many different Italian food favorites. In Veneto the ingredients added to the risotto are determined by location. For instance, in areas closer to the coast it will be made with fish and other seafood. As you move in from the coast you will see risotto made with different vegetables like pumpkin, asparagus, and radicchio. It is also commonly seen made with frogs' legs which appear in Italian food more than most people think. The Veneto region is also home to some unique foods. The dishes here are heavier and rely on exotic spices and sauces. One unique dish that originated here and is quickly gaining popularity as an Italian food dish is pasta and beans. Beans are used in many dishes here due to their ready availability. This is also an area of Italy where anchovies and stockfish are used extensively in Italian food.
However, fish is not the dish of choice here, being beaten out by meats and sausages. A favorite meat is sopressata which is a dry-cured salami. It gets its name from the fact that while drying it is often pressed with a weight and comes out looking flat. It is most often made with pork, but sometimes beef is used. Another favorite Italian food meat is garlic salami. The Italian food here is also reliant on some of the prized vegetables of the area. Veneto is especially known for their high quality red radicchio and their asparagus. One last dish that is unique to the area is a rice dish with young peas. The Italian food of Veneto clearly breaks the mold. It is full of diversity from dishes made wholly with vegetables and rice, to some of the most famous sausages in the world.
If a night of Italian food for you must include risotto, than Veneto is the place to be. If you consider yourself a sausage connoisseur than the Italian food of Veneto will again be a must taste for you. The region truly offers something for everyone! .
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