Authentic Italian Recipes

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Italy is rich not only in history and culture, but also in traditional Italian recipes. As a matter of fact, aside from the all-time authentic Italian recipes such as pasta dishes and pizza, which are cooked and served throughout the country, each region has its own special dishes as well.

Another factor you may encounter with regards to Italian cooking is that the same classic authentic Italian recipes may have different spellings or altogether different names in different locales. They may have the same main ingredients, cooking methods, presentations, and all. But don’t be too shocked if you encounter basically the same dish but with a different name when you’re in another town, commune, city, or region. Not only that, but even traditional Italian recipes handed down for several generations may vary from family to family, too!

Major Culinary Influences

To begin with, Italian cuisine has its roots way back in the ancient world, particularly in the 4th century BC. On top of that, there were significant influences indelibly left by several ancient civilizations, namely the following:

Etruscan

A civilization in ancient Italy that settled in the areas that are now Tuscany, northern Lazio, and western Umbria. What has been discovered about Etruscan cuisine did not come from ancient cookbooks but on domestic items and decorations discovered in their ancient cities. Based on historical findings, Etruscans were not fond of eating meat. They preferred cheese, garlic, legumes, and onion. They also liked soup. However, historians do believe they raised pigs.

Ancient Greece

An influential ancient civilization in the Mediterranean that played a huge part in the development of many European civilizations. Historians also believe they had a major role in the foundation of the modern Western culture, as we know it today. Its cuisine basically revolved around three major ingredients: wheat, wine, and olive oil. Other common foodstuff you could find in an ancient Greek household were bread, fruits and vegetables, eggs, and dairy products. Meat consumption depended on location and social status. Wild birds and hare were usually hunted in the countryside. In farms, it was usually domesticated fowls such as chickens and geese. Meanwhile, bigger domesticated animals such as pigs, goats, and sheep were common in the cities.

Ancient Rome

A politically powerful world power in ancient world history, it is also heavily influenced by the ancient Greeks. Among the major foodstuff in ancient Roman households were grains, legumes, leafy vegetables, some root crops, herbs, wild mushrooms, citrus and dried fruits, berries and nuts, olive oil, meat and dairy products, seasonings, and sweeteners. Grains were often made into breads and was a common fare for the military and people living in urban areas.

Italian Cuisine Today

Aside from the major influences in the past, another determining factor in authentic Italian recipes is the location. The entire Italian peninsula has quite a diverse landscape and Italian cooking has always been about using good quality and fresh ingredients. So families or households simply use whatever food items that can be easily found in the market, according to location.

In coastal areas, you will often find various kinds of seafood in many of their traditional Italian recipes. For mountainous areas, usual fares will be ones with heavy meat dishes, as well as cured or preserved fish. Pasta ingredients may also have differences, since dried pasta made of semolina is typical in the south while soft fresh pasta made with egg is the usual in the north.

Other characteristics of classic Italian recipes are its simplicity and seasonal ingredients. In fact, many traditional dishes can be considered easy Italian recipes, from their ingredients to their method to their presentation.

Risotto with Kale Pesto

Risotto with Kale Pesto recipe

  Print Recipe 4 from 1 vote Risotto with Kale Pesto Servings: 4 Author: NonnaBox Ingredients200 grams of white cabbage60 ml of extra virgin olive oil50 grams of almonds peeled50 grams of walnuts2 tablespoons of Parmesan cheese grated1 tablespoon of Romano cheese grated350 grams of Carnaroli rice50 grams of shallot2 teaspoons of mustard seeds1.7 liters […]

Baked Risotto with Kale

Baked Risotto with Kale recipe

  Print Recipe 5 from 2 votes Baked Risotto with Kale Servings: 4 Author: NonnaBox Ingredients½ cup walnuts coarsely chopped4 tablespoons olive oil1 medium onion finely chopped1 cup arborio riceKosher salt and freshly ground black pepper½ cup dry white wine1 small garlic clove1 cup packed fresh parsley leaves3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives2 cups torn Tuscan […]

Risotto with Milk Recipe – A Simple but Delicious Risotto Recipe

risotto with milk recipe

  Print Recipe 5 from 2 votes Risotto with Milk This risotto milk is to die for. Simple and delicious! Prep Time10 minsCook Time20 minsTotal Time30 mins Course: RisottoCuisine: ItalianKeyword: arborio, rice, Risotto Servings: 4 people Calories: 723kcal Author: Nonna Box Ingredients350 gr Arborio rice80 g butter1.75 liters milkSalt InstructionsPut the milk in a pot […]

Risotto with Onions

risotto with onions recipe

  Print Recipe 5 from 1 vote Risotto with Onions Servings: 4 Author: NonnaBox Ingredients350 g arborio rice2 white onions1 red onion1 liter of vegetable broth50 g grated Parmesan cheese40 g butterWhite wine to tasteSalt to taste InstructionsPeel the onions and chop finely, then pour into a pan to fry with 20 g of butter. […]

Easy Risotto with Oats Quick Recipe

risotto with oats recipe

  Print Recipe 0 from 0 votes Risotto with Oats Author: NonnaBox Ingredients½ cup of oatmeal½ cup of rice2 cups water1 cup skim milk1 tablespoon butter½ cup finely chopped tomatoes½ cup chopped zucchini½ cup chopped cauliflower½ cup grated low-fat cheese½ teaspoon pepperSalt to taste InstructionsCombine water, oats, white rice and vegetables in a pot and […]

Risotto with Parmesan

risotto with parmesan

  Print Recipe 5 from 2 votes Risotto with Parmesan This risotto with parmesan cheese is simple and delicious. Prep Time10 minsCook Time30 minsTotal Time40 mins Course: RisottoCuisine: ItalianKeyword: parmesan, Risotto Servings: 2 people Calories: 481kcal Author: Nonna Box Ingredients1 liter vegetable broth1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil1 shallot160 g Arborio rice50 ml dry white […]

Risotto with mushrooms and peas

Risotto with mushrooms and peas recipe

  Print Recipe 5 from 1 vote Risotto with mushrooms and peas Author: NonnaBox Ingredients300 grams rice300 grams mushrooms200 grams fresh or frozen shelled peas1 clove finely chopped garliconiondry white wine1 bunch parsley1 carton vegetable brothextra virgin olive oilsaltpeppergrated Parmesan cheese InstructionsFry the finely chopped garlic in a pan. Add the mushrooms and peas, cooking […]

Risotto with Grilled Shrimp Recipe

Risotto with Grilled Shrimp Recipe recipe

Add another risotto recipe to your repertoire with this easy-to-make risotto with grilled shrimp version! Print Recipe 5 from 1 vote Risotto with Grilled Shrimp Recipe Do you happen to have leftovers grilled shrimps? This is a delicious way to combine use them! Prep Time20 minsCook Time30 minsTotal Time50 mins Course: RisottoCuisine: ItalianKeyword: gamberi, Risotto […]

Risotto with dried mushrooms

Risotto with dried mushrooms recipe

Keen to try your hand at making risotto? Here’s an easy-to-prepare and authentically Italian risotto recipe made with fragrant and flavorful porcini mushrooms. Print Recipe 5 from 2 votes Risotto with dried mushrooms Risotto with dried mushrooms is the closest to porcini risotto – simply delicious! Prep Time40 minsCook Time25 minsTotal Time1 hr 5 mins […]

Risotto alla milanese con ossobuchi

Risotto alla milanese con ossobuchi

A wonderful fusion of two of Lombardy’s savory traditional dishes, Risotto alla milanese con ossobuchi is something your palate should definitely try. After all, nothing says Milanese soul food like this hearty plate of saffron-tinged risotto topped with ossobuchi, or cross-cut veal shanks. One of the key ingredients is, of course, a flavor-absorbing rice called carnaroli, which we […]

Penne alla Calabrese

penne alla calabrese

In Calabria, maccaruni d’a zita was always served at wedding luncheons. Today, this pasta is more popularly called penne Zita, which can be used for this Penne alla Calabrese recipe. The differences between regular penne and penne Zita is that the latter has a smoother surface and is slightly bigger in diameter. According to tradition, […]

Buttermilk-Chocolate Chip Crumb Cake Recipe

Buttermilk-Chocolate Chip Crumb Cake

Ever heard this quote? “Chocolate is the answer. Who cares what the question is.” Well, that is exactly what you’d think about this Buttermilk-Chocolate Chip Crumb cake. Only the cake is buttermilk-flavored, the chocolate are in the form of delicious chips, and the topping is a delectably rich streusel.   What is Streusel? The term […]