Valle d’Aosta is in the very north of Italy, and it shares its border between France and Switzerland. Because of this, there are many varied cultures living in this region. And their food is also a mixture of Italy, France, and Switzerland. In this foodie guide to this interesting region, we will try to explore its different cultures, food, and drinks.
If you are considering visiting Valle d’Aosta, then these are the dishes and ingredients that you will most likely find there. You will see that most of them will still be Italian, but with some flavours and influences from between France and Switzerland.
A Northern delicacy: Fontina cheese
The cheese that you can find in Valle d'Aosta is something that is completely different from other parts of Italy. Among all the ingredients and food that you can purchase there, the cheese is perhaps the most expensive.
Fontina DOP is one of the most famous and traditional cheeses that you can find in Valle d'Aosta. It is made with whole milk coming from cows that are a specific breed only found in this region. That is why it has the DOP certification: it can only be produced there to be authentic. You can also find a variety of cheeses of mixed heritage called Toma, blue cheese and goat's cheese.
Meat dishes to keep you warm in Winter
Mountain cattle is found everywhere in Valle d’Aosta. This is providing most of the region with dairy and meat products. Meat is a lot more available here, and cheaper than in some of the other regions. You can find stews, soups, and many other meat dishes in restaurants.
Most popular meats you can find are beef, pork and chamois. A few famous dishes are:
- "Carbonade"; popular also in south-east France, this is beef marinated in salt for 12 days, then slowly cooked with garlic and lard. It is then topped with a sauce made from dry white wine sauce, egg, flour, cinnamon, cloves, pepper and nutmeg.
- Crêpes "Valle d'Aosta-style" with Fontina cheese and cured ham.
- Bouilli à la Saumure, a mixed meat stew with sausages and potatoes.
Fruit and vegetables in Valle d’Aosta
In other Italian regions, there are a large variety of fruit and vegetables available. However, in this part of Italy, there isn’t much land for planting fruit and vegetables. Thus, the most popular vegetables are onions, radishes, potatoes and leeks. Fruits are chestnuts, apples and pears.
Popular dishes with vegetables include:
- Stinging nettles omelette;
- Leek soup;
- "Seupa à la vapelenentse", one of the most famous dishes, a soup made of bread, fontina cheese and savoy cabbage.
Sweet dishes that you need to try when visiting this region
You don’t need to wonder about some of the sweet dishes and desserts that you need to try when you are visiting this region. Of course, we needed to finish this foodie guide to Valle d'Aosta with some sweet Italian treats.
- "Blanc-manger", a traditional chocolate pudding;
- "Brochat", fresh milk with red wine and lots of sugar;
- Valle d'Aosta "shingles', sweet crackers made of almond paste.
Valle d’Aosta is a unique region in Italy. This is because it is on the border between Italy and two other countries. Thanks to this, there are some great food options that you can try when you are visiting this region. It is beautiful there, with some great history and culture, which makes this an interesting place to visit. With this foodie guide, you will have an idea about the food that you can enjoy when you are visiting Valle d'Aosta.