The gastronomical excellences of Emilia-Romagna
The Emilia-Romagna region is a land in north eastern part of Italy that includes the two historical districts of Emilia and Romagna, with its administrative city of Bologna. Emilia-Romagna is one of the largest regions in Italy, both in terms of surface area and population, and one of the richest. It is also considered one of the richest regions in Italy for its gastronomic and wine traditions.
PIADINA ROMAGNOLA PGI
The Piadina or Piada Romagnola is being produced in the districts of Rimini, Forlì-Cesena, Ravenna and Bologna. It has ancient origins and tells the story of the people of Romagna. It is a simple food that over the centuries has identified and unified the land of Romagna under a single banner, going from being a symbol of rustic and rural life, 'the bread of the poor', to a widely consumed product. In the coastal area, particularly around Rimini, the thinner and more flexible Piadina Romagnola Riminese has historically been widespread and established. There are four essential ingredients for Piadina Romagnola: wheat flour, water (just enough to obtain a homogeneous dough), salt and fat (lard and/or olive oil and/or extra virgin olive oil). The dough, portioned into loafs or balls, is then 'rolled', either by hand using a rolling pin or with a mechanical rolling machine. Baking of the puff pastry disc on both sides should take about 4 minutes.
SQUACQUERONE OF ROMAGNA PDO
PROSCIUTTO DI PARMA PDO
The swine must be born and bred in Italy and the entire process must take place in the 'typical area': a limited district of the province of Parma located south of the Via Emilia, up to a maximum altitude of 900 metres above sea level, where the climatic conditions are ideal for drying the cured hams and preserving them. Prosciutto di Parma PDO embodies the history of a territory, its traditions and its people, who over the centuries have created and developed with great passion a genuine product with a superior taste.The great attention to the quality of the raw material being used, the care in its processing, the balance of its aromas and flavours are the key elements that make Prosciutto di Parma one of the most representative products of Made in Italy, which is well-known and appreciated all over the world.
CULATELLO OF ZIBELLO PDO
The Culatello was born in the Parma area around the Po river banks, in an area where winters are cold, long and foggy and summers are torrid and sunny. The alternation of dry and humid periods allows a slow maturation of the cured meats, during which the typical aromas and flavours that have made Culatello di Zibello PDO famous all over the world develop. The area of production is made up of Busseto, Polesine Parmense, Zibello, Soragna, Roccabianca, San Secondo, Sissa and Colorno.Once sliced very thin, the slice is tender and predominantly low in fat, with a uniform red colour, while the fat is pearly white. The aroma is intense and very characteristic, the mild and delicate flavour has a prominent aromatic note.
PARMIGIANO REGGIANO PDO
It's produced in the districts of Parma, Reggio Emilia, Modena and Bologna (left bank of the Reno river) in Emilia-Romagna and in the Mantua area (right bank of the Po river) in Lombardy. Its origins can be traced back to the Middle Ages, when Benedictine and Cistercian monks drained the marshlands and cultivated the pastures. The cheese today is the same as it was eight centuries ago: the same appearance and fragrance, it is prepared in the same places, with the same skilful ritual gestures. Parmigiano Reggiano PDO is a hard, cooked, non-pressed cheese made from raw cow's milk obtained from animals bred in the area of production and fed with local forages according to a strict protocol. Easily digestible and rich in nutrients, Parmigiano Reggiano PDO has the unique taste of a product made without additives, whose concentration of proteins, vitamins, calcium and minerals makes it suitable for all ages. There is no Emilia-Romagna cuisine without Parmigiano Reggiano, the most popular ingredient in the Italian tradition.
The Lasagna is a very old dish that dates back to Roman times; it was a thin layer of pasta made from a mixture of wheat flour cooked over a fire known by the Greek name 'laganon', and later described by Cicero in his De re Cquinaria. The dish soon spread throughout the Italian peninsula, and each territory used to prepare it differently. The Emilian Lasagna, often known in the plural as 'Lasagne', is referred to as 'Bolognese' only because this adjective was assigned in 1863 by the Bolognese writer Francesco Zambrini, author of the 'Libro della cucina del Trecento', but in reality it is Emilian in all respects. An essential distinction runs between Modenese and Bolognese, which is that modenese 'lasagna' is typically made of green pasta, while Bolognese 'lasagna' is made of yellow pasta; furthermore, typically, Bolognese 'lasagna' is alternately layered with Béchamel sauce and meat sauce, while Modenese 'lasagna' has layers in which the two ingredients are combined.
Tortellini are a worldwide known Italian excellence, the glory of Emilia Romagna. The classic filling consists of pulled pork, mortadella, prosciutto and Parmigiano Reggiano. Like any stuffed pasta, they only need a short cooking time and can be served either dry (with cream) or with broth.
And these are just but a few of the gastronomic excellences that Emilia-Romagna has to offer. There would be many other excellences, but collecting them all would require a book.