Discoveritalia.it - Il portale turistico di Istituto Geografico De Agostini Costiera Amalfitana - dintorni di Positano
 
Wednesday April 23, 2014 
















On the sky runs with the champions in Valtellina
Specialties to try



Sciatt



In the Sondrio dialect, "sciatt" means toad, but, once served on the table, the term refers to the cheese buckwheat pancakes, and it is not randomly used: these delicious morsels, in fact, resemble to little toads due to the central swelling typical of their shape.
They represent a dish of the traditional rural cuisine in Valtellina, and, for this reason, there are many versions created by local habits and imagination in the kitchen: buckwheat grey flour is a must though, with grappa and pig fat to fry it in. All poor but delicious and genuine ingredients.
The sciatt are typically eaten with green salad, especially the "cicorino" of the local garden, cut in thin slices and dressed with vinegar. These pancakes, eaten warm, are an unforgettable delicacy, ideal as hors d'oeuvre or second course.

Ingredients
200 g buckwheat flour, 100 g white flour, mineral water, 2 spoonfuls of grappa, 250 g low-fat Casera cheese, oil, vinegar, salt, chicory.
Preparation
Mix the flour, the grappa and salt in a bowl, then add mineral water till you obtain a medium-soft dough. Dice the Casera in pieces of 2-centimetre sides, and dip them in the batter. Let it rest for two hours.
Take one cheese cube at time with a spoon, properly covered with the dough, and drop it in the boiling-hot oil, make the sciatt turn brown and drain them. Serve them on the finely-sliced chicory dressed with oil, vinegar and salt.
Time
  more than two hours
Difficulty
  low






Pizzoccheri



The buckwheat fettuccine (ribbons of pasta), processed and mix with durum wheat, are probably the most popular delicacy in Valtellina. They are boiled with many different types of vegetables and then heated in a baking-pan with the vegetables, butter and cheese, better if the native one.
The Valtellina pizzoccheri,in addition to the experience of the Italian and Lombard cooks, owe much of their peculiarity to the buckwheat, which gives them that unique taste many connoisseurs feast with.
Their value does not only reside in the pleasure they give to our taste: the buckwheat is a healthy food, rich in vitamin B, E and magnesium. Indeed, it was used again by the mountain population, living in a cold climate for most of the year, due to its warming capacity: this king of wheat is an authentic source of energy and vigour, used by old farmers in Valtellina fortherapeutic purposes in case of weakness or convalescence.

Ingredients
200gr buckwheat flour, 100gr white flour, water and salt, 300gr ribs or Savoy cabbages, 150 gr potatoes, 250 gr light and fat Casera cheese, 200 gr butter, 3 garlic cloves.
Preparation
Knead the two kinds of flour with salt and water, until the dough becomes smooth and feels soft. Roll out the pastry, making it not so thin, and make some "listarelle".
Cut the vegetables into pieces (ribs in the summer, Savoy cabbages in the winter) and cook them in a lot of salty water for about ten minutes.
Then, take out of the pot the pizzoccheri with a ladle, little by little, lay them on a pyrex saucepan and sprinkle the cubes of Casera over them. Repeat the procedure making three or four layers.
Finally, season with butter, slightly cooked with slices of garlic.
Time
  an hour
Difficulty
  medium






Polenta taragna



This traditional dish of the Valtellina is one of the most popular in all mountain location sin Lombardy. In addition, when served warm and stringy, it is ideal with sausages, cotechino (Italian pork sausage), mixed mushrooms and onions, depending on the recipes.
The peculiarity of the polenta taragna, that makes it different from the other types of polenta, resides in the buckwheat: the traditional yellow flour is mixed to the brown buckwheat flour, creating a unique flavour. The polenta taragna of the Valtellina, distinguishes itself for the cheese used: in the original recipe, the Bitto, is used, while the recipe typical of Bergamo and the Val Brembana the Branzi cheese is preferred.

Ingredients
250 g di butter, 100g di yellow flour, 500 g buckwheat flour, 250 g Bitto cheese, salt, water.
Preparation
Pour about 2 litres of water into a pot and make it boil. Sprinkle the two types of flour, mixed beforehand, and cook, stirring for a bout an hour. Add crumbled butter and cook for 10 more minutes. Add the finely-sliced cheese and stir well for a couple of minutes, till the cheese melts. Then pour the polenta on the wooden chopping board and serve.
Time
  an hour and a half
Difficulty
  medium






Bisci˘la



The main protagonist of the pastry tradition in Valtellina is the "Bisciola", handmade produced kneading the ingredients nature offers at the beginning of autumn: walnuts, figs, grapes and honey are the exquisite ingredients of the simple traditional dessert of the Valtellina which comes out of the oven shaped like a tantalizing loaf. Its taste being so unique, it is often offered in the Christmas period as a replacement of the panettone.
The slices of bisciola can be eaten with whipped cream or dipped into the grappa, as it was traditionally done in every house in the past.
The group of confectioners of the Craftsmen Union in Sondrio recently proposed a disciplinary procedure for the production of the bisciola, in order to protect the typical dessert of the Valtellina from any possible counterfeit.

Ingredients
100 g whole milk, 2 eggs, 40 g butter, 40 g sugar, 200 g white flour, 1/2 bag of yeast, 1 sprinkle of salt, , grated rind of one lemon, 100 g walnuts, 100 g sultana raisins, 60 g nuts, 150 g dry figs, 20 g pine kernels.
Preparation
Pour milk, an egg, softened butter, sugar, flour mixed with yeast, salt into a bowl or a kneading machine.
Knead until you obtain a smooth, homogeneous and quite-soft pastry.
Add lemon rind, all the crumbled dry fruit and knead meticulously.
Pour the pastry on the table covered in flour, knead it to make it longer, and then lay it on the buttered baking-pan.
Cut the bisciola lengthwise to make it open during the cooking for a better result. Spread the egg with a brush on the dessert and cook it in the oven at a temperature of 160░C-180░C for thirty to forty minutes.
Time
  an hour and a half
Difficulty
  high