Friuli-Venezia Giulia is the most eastern region of Italy. The cuisine there is highly influenced by countries bordering Italy, including Slovenia, Hungary, Croatia, and Austria. Here are some of the food and dishes that are traditional in this region.
San Daniele del Friuli Ham
This is a type of prosciutto, or dried ham, that is produced only around the town of San Daniele in Friuli Venezia Giulia. Compared to other types of prosciutto, it is sweeter in flavor and darker in color. It is served alone, with bread or as an ingredient in meals.
Montasio is made in both Friuli-Venezia Giulia and Veneto using unpasteurized cow’s milk. It is a soft, creamy cheese with a mild, nutty and fruity flavor. It was awarded the protected designation of origin (PDO) in 1986. There are three varieties of this cheese; fresh, middle and aged.
The stews in this region take their influence from Slavic and Austrian cooking traditions. One of the most popular forms of stew is goulash. This contains beef, peppers, onions, tomatoes, and paprika. It is usually served with polenta that is wetter than in other regions of Italy. Local people make stews from any meat along with seasonal, local vegetables. Venison, rabbit, and hare are the meats most often used in stews.
Like most regions in Italy, bread is a staple food that is used as the main part of a meal, an ingredient or an accompaniment. Typical breads in this region are made using wheat, rye, barley or pumpkins. At Easter, gubana bread is served. Similar to brioche, it is layered with nuts, dried fruit and cocoa.
Seafood is commonly served along the coastal areas with many dishes having freshly caught fish and seafood as the main part of the meal. Turbot is the most popular fish in this region as it is readily available. Risotto di Marano is a typical seafood dish that contains shrimp, squid, and mussels. Another popular option is granzevola alla triestina which is baked spider crab served with bread, lemon, parsley, and garlic.
In this region, sweet dishes are eaten regularly and pastries, cakes, puddings, and tarts are all popular. The people of this region even take sweet ingredients like dried fruit and add them to savory foodstuffs, such as pasta, polenta, and rice.
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