10 Greatest Dishes To Sample In Italy

Pizza quattro formaggi

Quattro formaggi is a variety of Italian pizza topped with a combination of four kinds of cheese, as the name suggests. Traditionally, the cheeses should be mozzarella and three other, local cheeses, depending on the region, such as Gorgonzola, Fontina, and Parmigiano-Reggiano.

Optionally, the pizza can be further enriched with the addition of basil and tomato. The combination of cheeses gives the pizza an unusual, unique flavor that is loved by cheese-aficionados all over the world.

The Friedrichshain area also has a variety of DIY cinemas and outdoor screening venues, like B-ware Ladenkino and Durchsfenster. The latter is a secret cinema, whose name means “through the window cinema”; indeed, you’ll need to climb through a window on the ground floor to visit.

Tiramisù

Even though tiramisù is actually a fairly recent invention, this dessert of coffee-soaked ladyfingers layered with mascarpone cream enjoys an iconic status among Italian desserts. Its name stems from the phrase tirami sù, an Italian expression which literally means pick me up, a reference to the uplifting effects of sugar, liquor, and coffee.

The origins of tiramisù are heavily disputed between Veneto and Friuli-Venezia Giulia regions, but it is often suggested that the first was made in Veneto in the early 1980s. In fact, the earliest documented recipe for tiramisù (interestingly, without alcohol!) was printed in the 1981 spring edition of Vin Veneto magazine in an article on coffee-based desserts by Giuseppe Maffioli, a renowned food critic and member of the Italian Academy of Cuisine.

However, in August 2017, Friuli-Venezia Giulia's tiramisu was officially added to the list of traditional regional dishes, but a Veneto local won the Tiramisu World Cup in November 2017, so the playing field is somewhat levelled once again. Regardless of these disputes, the perfect tiramisù should always deliver a serious caffeine kick from a shot of strong espresso, while brandy-fortified Marsala wine adds a nice sweet buzz.

Polpette

Polpette is a word denoting Italian meatballs, traditionally consisting of ground beef or veal (and sometimes pork) that is shaped into small balls. These meatballs are usually enriched with a wide variety of ingredients such as parsley, eggs, garlic, and sometimes even mortadella or Parmigiano Reggiano.

Although some might think that polpette are served with pasta, that is mostly an American thing, and Italian polpette are typically consumed on their own as a snack, appetizer, or finger food that is especially beloved by children of all ages.

Pizza alla diavola

Diavola is a variety of Italian pizza that is traditionally topped with tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, spicy salami, and hot chili peppers. Black olives are optional and can be added for extra flavor.

Salsiccia

Salsiccia is a universal name for different types of fresh Italian sausage. It usually refers to a sausage made with minced or ground pork meat, pork fat, and numerous spices. The mixture is stuffed into a natural pork or sheep casing, and it is rarely cured or smoked.

Pesto Genovese

Pesto Genovese is a sauce with origins in the Italian city of Genoa. Traditionally, it consists of basil, garlic, pine nuts, olive oil, and cheeses such as Parmigiano Reggiano or Pecorino. Its name stems from the word pestare, meaning to pound or crush, referring to the original method of making the sauce with a mortar and pestle.

It is said that pesto originated from the ancient Romans who ate a paste called moretum, made by crushing together ingredients such as cheese, herbs, and garlic. Pesto is usually used with pasta, traditionally with trofie or trenette, but can also sometimes be served with sliced tomatoes or boiled potatoes.

Foccacia

This chewy, oily flatbread is quite versatile, and can be topped with a range of ingredients such as coarse sea salt, olive oil, herbs, tomatoes, or olives. Historians tend to believe it was invented either by the Etruscans or in ancient Greece, although unleavened flatbreads have long been made throughout the Middle East.

The name focaccia is derived from the Roman panis focacius, meaning “hearth bread”, referring to the fact that focaccia was traditionally baked in coals in Roman times. The basic recipe spread to France and Spain over time, where the bread is known as fouaisse and hogaza, respectively.

Foccacia’s pockmarked appearance results from indentations made in the dough to prevent large bubbles from appearing on its surface during baking. Today, savory versions of focaccia are topped with rosemary, sage, garlic, cheese, and onions, while sweet varieties can be topped with honey, raisins, sugar, and lemon peel, among others.

Pizza Margherita

Pizza Margherita is a delicacy that is literally fit for a queen. In 1889, Queen Margherita of Savoy visited Naples, where she was served a pizza that was made to resemble the colors of the Italian flag: red tomatoes, white mozzarella cheese, and green basil.

It was made by a chef named Raffaele Esposito of Pizzeria Brandi, who is credited for its invention. The Queen loved the dish, and Esposito named it after her - pizza Margherita, but such a pizza was also made before that time, and can be dated back to at least 1866, when the most popular pizza toppings included basil, cheese, and tomatoes, but the pizza was not yet named Margherita.

Since those times, Margherita has become one of the most popular pizza varieties in the world, and in 2009, it was protected as one of the three Pizze Napoletane with an STG European label of protection, proving its excellence in flavor, ingredients, and traditional pizza-making techniques.

Pizza

The story of the invention of this everyday household name changes depending on how you define it. If you think a pizza is an oven-baked flatbread, its origins lie in the ancient Middle East. If pizza must have toppings, its origins date back to the ancient Romans and Greeks, who baked flatbreads and topped them with available, local spices and olive oil.

The quiet secrecy of Wedding is part of its charm and makes it well worth a visit. Be sure to check out Berliner Unterwelten – a subterranean museum exploring the city’s underground history, with a focus on World War II air-raid shelters and tunnels – and the stunning 70-hectare Rehberge Park.

Trofie al pesto

Trofie al pesto is one of the most famous, if not the most famous dish from the Italian region of Liguria. The dish is a combination of two elements: trofie, the Ligurian hand-rolled pasta made with flour and water, and pesto, a famous green sauce consisting of seven elements: basil, garlic, olive oil, pine nuts, salt, and two types of cheese.

The authentic pesto Genovese should contain basilico Genovese, extra-virgin Ligurian olive oil, high-quality garlic, Parmigiano Reggiano DOP, and Pecorino cheese from Rome, Tuscany, Sardegna, or Sicily. Trofie al pesto is traditionally served in small portions, as a first course, where tiny trofie perfectly pick up pesto's fine consistency, resulting in a symphony of flavors in each bite.