If you’re planning a trip to Italy, you’ll definitely want to add the city of Parma to your itinerary. Not only is it home to some of the country’s most iconic food brands, but it’s also a food lover’s paradise, with a wide variety of delicious dishes to try.
While you could easily spend your whole trip eating your way around Parma, here are 10 of the best foods you absolutely must try while you’re in town. From world-famous prosciutto to mouth-watering ravioli, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.
1. Prosciutto di Parma
Prosciutto di Parma is a type of dry-cured ham that originates from the city of Parma in Italy. The ham is made from the hind leg of a pig that has been carefully selected and bred for its high-quality meat.
The ham is then slowly cured for over a year, resulting in a flavor that is both salty and sweet. Prosciutto di Parma is often served as an appetizer, with thin slices of the ham being wrapped around melon or other fruits.
It can also be used in main dishes such as pasta or pizza. Regardless of how it is enjoyed, Prosciutto di Parma is sure to leave a lasting impression.
Parmigiano-Reggiano is a type of cheese that is produced in the city of Parma, Italy. The cheese is made from raw cow’s milk, and it is aged for a minimum of 12 months. Parmigiano-Reggiano has a hard, crumbly texture and a nutty flavor.
It is often used as a grating cheese, and it can also be melted and used in sauces. Parmigiano-Reggiano is a protected designation of origin cheese, which means that it can only be produced in the city of Parma.
There are several different types of Parmigiano-Reggiano, including stravecchio, which is aged for 36 months, and vaccino, which is made from pasteurized milk. Parmigiano-Reggiano is an important part of the culinary tradition of Parma, and it is one of the most popular cheeses in Italy.
Culatello is a type of Italian cured meat that is made from the hindquarters of the pig. The meat is salted and then aged for a minimum of 12 months, often longer.
The result is a delicately flavored and textured ham that is perfect for slicing thin and eating on its own or using in sandwiches and pasta dishes. Culatello originates from the town of Zibello in the province of Parma, Italy.
The climate here is perfect for curing meat, with cool winters and humid summers. The local pigs are also fed on a diet of cereals and grapes, which helps to give the Culatello its unique flavor. If you’re lucky enough to visit Parma, be sure to try some Culatello for yourself.
Mortadella is a delicious Italian sausage that is perfect for any meal. It is made from pork and is seasoned with garlic, salt, and pepper. Mortadella is typically served sliced thin and on a sandwich.
However, it can also be enjoyed on its own or as part of an antipasto platter. The town of Parma is world-renowned for its Mortadella. In fact, the sausage is so popular that there is an annual festival dedicated to it.
During the festival, visitors can enjoy Mortadella-themed dishes, participate in Mortadella-eating contests, and even watch the sausage being made. If you’re looking for a delicious and unique food experience, be sure to check out Mortadella in Parma, Italy.
5. Gnocchi al Pesto
Gnocchi al Pesto is a traditional dish from Parma, Italy. It is made with potato gnocchi, pesto sauce, and Parmesan cheese. The dish is typically served as a first course, but it can also be the main course.
Gnocchi al Pesto is simple to make and can be made ahead of time. The Dish can be served hot or cold. It is a versatile dish that can be made with different types of pesto sauce. The most common type of pesto sauce used in Gnocchi al Pesto is basil pesto sauce.
Gnocchi al Pesto is typically served as a first course, but it can also be enjoyed as a main dish. When made correctly, the gnocchi is light and fluffy, and the pesto sauce is flavorful and creamy. If you’re ever in Parma, be sure to try this classic dish!
6. Tagliatelle al Ragu
Tagliatelle al Ragu is a classic Italian dish that is typically made with fresh egg pasta, a meat-based sauce, and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. The dish originates from the city of Parma in the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy, and it is one of the most popular dishes in the area.
Tagliatelle al Ragu can be made with a variety of different meats, but the most commonly used meat is beef. The beef is slowly cooked in a tomato-based sauce until it is incredibly tender. Once the beef is cooked, it is combined with the pasta and cheese, and the dish is served.
Tagliatelle al Ragu is a hearty and filling dish that is perfect for a cold winter day. It is also a relatively simple dish to make, making it a great option for weeknight dinners.
7. Lasagne Verdi
Lasagne Verdi is a traditional Italian dish that originates from the city of Parma in the Emilia-Romagna region. The dish is made with green lasagne pasta sheets, a meat sauce, besciamella sauce, and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.
The meat sauce is typically made with beef, pork, and chicken, and the besciamella sauce is a white sauce made with milk, flour, and butter. The dish is then baked in the oven until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
Lasagne Verdi is a rich and flavourful dish that is sure to satisfy any appetite. If you find yourself in Parma, be sure to try this regional specialty. You won’t be disappointed!
8. Ravioli di Erbette
Ravioli di erbette is a traditional dish from Parma, Italy that is full of flavor and history. The ravioli is made with fresh herbs, cheese, and egg yolks, and are traditionally served in a broth.
The dish is said to date back to the Middle Ages when it was first created by monks in the region. Today, ravioli di erbette is still made using the same traditional methods and is a popular dish among locals and tourists alike. If you’re ever in Parma, be sure to try this delicious dish!
9. Anolini in Brodo
The city of Parma is renowned for its food culture, and one of its most iconic dishes is anolini in brodo. This dish consists of small, ring-shaped pasta parcels filled with a variety of different meats and cheeses, simmered in a rich broth.
When made correctly, anolini in brodo is a truly delicious and comforting dish. The key to its success lies in the quality of the ingredients used. The pasta must be freshly made, and the fillings should be carefully selected to create a pleasing balance of flavors.
The broth, too, must be full-flavored and deeply satisfying. With its rich history and delicious taste, it is easy to see why anolini in brodo is one of Italy’s most beloved dishes.
10. Torta di Riso
Italy is home to many delicious dishes, but one of the most unusual and tantalizing is torta di riso. This dish originated in the city of Parma, and it consists of rice that has been mixed with eggs, cheese, and cream, then shaped into a cake and fried.
The result is a crispy exterior and a rich, creamy interior that is sure to delight any palate. While torta di riso is traditionally served as an appetizer, it can also be enjoyed as a main course or even dessert. So if you find yourself in Parma, be sure to try this unique and delicious dish.
If you’re looking for a truly authentic Italian dining experience, then you must visit Parma. This picturesque city is home to some of the best food in the country, and there’s something to suit every taste. From hearty dishes like lasagne verdi and tagliatelle al ragu to more unusual fare like torta di riso, Parma has it all. So what are you waiting for? Book your ticket to Italy today and enjoy the delicious food of Parma!