Enogastronomia 'tra il Reno e il Panaro'
The cuisine between the Reno and Panaro rivers is varied and based on local products. It mixes Bolognese and Modenese traditional flavours and so creates a tasty gastronomic synthesis. The most famous dishes are made of egg puff pastry: tortellini, tortelloni, lasagne and tagliatelle, together with savoury stuffing and condiments based on herbs, meat, mushrooms and truffles.
Pig meat is worked in a traditional way and so salami, coppa, bacon, ciccioli and ham from Modena are produced. Also, cheese is quite common: cream cheese, matured sheep cheese and the famous and delicious Parmesan.
Among the second dishes we have to highlight grilled meat, meat in tomato sauce and roast meat.
Traditional cooking also offers some specialities that were once considered “poor” while nowadays they are sought after by food lovers: tigelle, fried crescentine (or “gnocco fritto”) and borlenghi. Crescentine were the ancient mountain bread and they can be served with meat, cheese and cold cuts. Also borlenghi (depending on the place, they can be called zampanelle or burlenghi) are really appreciated. They are made by a fluid dough of flour, water and salt, and are cooked in a copper pan called “sole”. The result is a thin, crispy pastry, filled with a condiment made of lard and Parmesan.
Other typical products are chestnuts and potatoes. With chestnut flour it’s possible to make sweet and nutritious dishes: polenta, fritters, castagnacci and mistocche. Savoury potatoes from these hills are an irreplaceable element in the preparation of a lot of recipes. Vignola is not very far, and also in this area different kinds of cherries are grown. A lot of wine is produced too: Lambrusco Grasparossa in Castelvetro, Bolognese Hills wines and the famous Pignoletto.
All these tastes are unique, and they can be found in the tasty menus of the various restaurants and agritourisms.
Compagnia 'dla Cùnza'
1 Kg of flour
5 litres of salt
1 teaspoon of salt
30 g of beacon or italian "lardo"
260 g of Parmesan
First of all it’s necessary to prepare the “cola”: a very liquid batter made of flour, water and salt. In some recipes even an egg is used. This “cola” must be prepared a few hours before the borlenghi are cooked and should be left in the fridge for no more than 24-36 hours.
Flour, eggs and salt are put into a bowl, which must be big enough to contain all the necessary water. All the ingredients are then mixed with water, avoiding the formation of lumps, until the desired consistency is reached. While the “cola” is in the fridge, prepare the condiment (cunza, counza).
Put the previously cut bacon or lard (or both of them) in a bowl, and add a lot of chopped garlic and rosemary. Heat the bacon and lard, and then add the garlic and rosemary. “Concia” can be prepared with the same ingredients. Put on the warm borlengo together with grated Parmesan.