Veneto has some amazing dishes, which is why I wanted to introduce you to this Foodie Guide to Veneto.
What is the first thing that comes to mind when thinking of the Italian region of Veneto? Most people would immediately think of its main city, Venice. But let me tell you, you should also be thinking about food. And, even if Venice is such a great city, there are many other places around Veneto that you should visit for sure.
Veneto is a beautiful region, split between coastline and mountains. And, of course, depending on where you are in the region, whether by the sea or in the mountains, the food varies greatly within the region itself, and from most other regions in Italy. If you are planning a tour through Italy, and you are planning to visit Veneto, you might want to know more about the food that you are going to find there. This is the complete foodie guide of Veneto.
Fish and seafood
Because this is a region alongside the coast, fish and seafood are some widely used ingredients in this part of the country. Especially in Venice, which is basically built on water.
You will find lots of dishes with squid, octopus, mussels, clams, and prawns as ingredients. At the fish markets, you will find fish like Pilchards, sardines, and anchovies.
These are a few of the dishes that you shouldn’t miss:
- mixed deep-fried fish “fritto misto”;
- “sarde in saòr, sardines with raisins;
- “baccala’ alla Vicentina”: baccala’ is a special way of conserving cod by drying it out; covered in flour with onions, herbs, milk and parmesan.
Rice and polenta
In Veneto, rice and polenta are the staples of people’s diets and not pasta. Yes, you will find a couple of pasta dishes, but this is mostly for tourists. Locals prefer rice and polenta and this is also the cheaper options for locals to purchase. This is because rice is growing there and it is cheaper to purchase than in other regions.
Polenta, whether deep-fried or soft, is a side to most regional dishes. If you are looking for regional pasta dishes, you should definitely try “pasta e fasoi”, which is a red bean soup with pasta and the famous pumpkin tortellini, served especially near the Lake Garda region.
Cheese and vegetables
Some of the most popular PDO-protected cheeses will be found in Veneto. Especially the cheese called Grana Padano. Other cheeses that you will find in this region is Asiago and Taleggio. Varieties of Schiz, Casatella Trevigiana, Montasio, Monte Veronese, Piave, and Provolone Valpadana will also be found in Vento stores. Making this one of the regions with the largest variety of local cheese.
Veneto has highly fertilized soil, which is great for growing vegetables. They grow a variety of radicchio, a perennial cultivated form of leaf chicory. From Treviso’s Radicchio, Chioggia, and Castelfranco. Another famous vegetable grown locally is the Bibione asparagus.
Unlike the bordering region of Emilia-Romagna, there isn’t a large variety of rich meat options. However, this doesn’t mean that you will not find any meat dishes when you are visiting this region. Beef, duck, and horsemeat are really popular in this region. Especially further inland. The exception is “fegato alla Veneziana” which is Venetian-style liver, you cook it with onions and serve it alongside deep-fried slices of polenta.
Last but not least, there are some delicious Italian desserts you should try in Veneto.
- Macafame, a sort of bread pudding with apples, dried figs and fruits and nuts;
- Torta fregolotta, large crumbs of flour, cream and sugar baked together;
- Tiramisu! Yes, the city of Treviso, in Northern Veneto, is credited with the invention of the most popular Italian dessert. And even though it is disputed by Friuli, the region that also claims its creation, no one can deny that this concoction of mascarpone, coffee and ladyfingers is absolutely divine.
Veneto is an interesting region in Italy to visit. Not only do they have the most popular city, Venice, that you can visit. They have some great food options as well. With this foodie guide to Veneto, you will have an idea about what you can expect in restaurants when you visit this region.