Italian Summer Cuisine

La cucina italiana è una delle più amate del mondo. Il segreto del suo successo risiede nell’utilizzo di ingredienti locali e, soprattutto, stagionali che ne garantisce freschezza e sapore. L’arrivo dell’estate in Italia porta un’abbondanza di verdure e frutta ideali per creare ricette semplici, calde o fredde, veloci, appetitose e generalmente a basso apporto  calorico. Acquistare e consumare verdure e frutta di stagione - cioé nel momento in cui sono mature naturalmente - significa alimentarsi in modo corretto, sano e naturale, gustando al contempo il meglio della produzione nostrana.   

The Italian cuisine is one of the world’s most beloved. The secret of Italian food lies in its local, and most importantly, seasonal ingredients. Seasonal eating in Italy provides fresh ingredients at the height of their flavor. If you are looking to experience the very best of Italian cuisine, use this easy guide to order the right ingredients during your summer travels.

It’s no secret the summertime in Italy brings an abundance of vegetables. Cucumbers, eggplant, cantaloupe/melon, peppers, basil, tomatoes, peas, coconut, peaches, watermelon, and figs are just a short list of the freshest produce available during Italy’s summers. Some vegetables, such as zucchini, are at their height during all three summer months, depending on where you are in Italy. If you happen to be on the Amalfi Coast this summer, try an Amalfi lemon. Generally considered (along with Sicilian lemons) to have the most vibrant and aromatic flavor in the world, the Amalfi lemon thrives in high heat conditions and tends to improve the later in summer it is picked.

Zucchini and pumpkin flowers are perfect during June as are strawberries. In the mood for more of a treat? A strawberry gelato on a hot June afternoon is the answer! Also, look for the big, purple variety of figs which have their harvest at the end of June.

If your travels take you into July, continue to enjoy the plethora of fresh vegetables. However, many fruits are coming into bloom as well. Wild blueberries, other forest berries, apricots, and melons will hit menus all over Italy. Add a fresh slice of cantaloupe to your prosciutto for a quick and simple delicacy.

August is the month when all the summer fruits and vegetables reach their maximum flavor levels. Tomatoes and eggplants reign supreme. Now is the time to order that bruschetta or caprese salad at your favorite trattoria. Finish your meal with a lemon granita or lemon gelato (especially if you are near the Amalfi Coast).

The joys of seasonal food in Italy bring the freshest and most flavorful meals to your plate. Enjoy your time savoring the most exquisite food in the world.