You might be shocked to discover that pizza isn’t included in this list. I thought that would be too easy and since you’re traveling to Italy to experience something new, why spend each meal eating something you can have anywhere in the world? Besides, New York and Chicago make the best pizza on the planet! (Sorry Italy, blame it on your forefathers who immigrated to America years ago.)
Cooked cow stomach mixed with delicious sauce, parmigiana and veg, and traditionally served with a slice or two of fresh Italian bread; even offered as a sandwich by some vendors. It’s really silky, tender and delicious. Similar to pasta actually. Don’t get hung up on where the meat came from. Italians and many other Europeans have immense respect for the animals whose lives they take and don’t waste much.
Again, cow stomach. This delish dish is even slightly more tender and thinly sliced than the Tripe. It’s served in a bowl or on a bun and can be found in food trucks and cafes all over the city.
Really moist and savory stuffed, boneless pig. This is one of my favorite eats in Italy. I may have spoken too soon when saying the Tripe is my favorite Florence street food. Just looking at this picture reminds me of just how tender pork can really be when prepared in the traditional Italian way. Porchetta needs no bun or side dish to be enjoyed, but you’ll find vendors who offer it combined with other foods. It’s also great if cow stomach just doesn’t appeal to you.
Great when topped with your favorite meats, veg and cheeses. It’s also great topped with butter on the side of a soup, lasagna, or salad dish. Italian and French panini are the best, but I think Italy has the best! If you’re sensitive to gluten (not deadly sensitive) but love your wheat, you have to try a panini while in Florence or any where in Italy for that matter. They grow and process their wheat differently and many people with Celiac will tell you that European wheat just doesn’t have the same effect on them as the American and Asian varieties do.
Italian ice cream (Gelato is native to Florence, going back to the 1500’s). This is nothing like the watered down, sugar-heavy kind you’ll find in America. Italian Gelato is light, yet flavorful and the only real problem with this stuff is how hard it will be to stop after eating a scoop or two of your favorite flavor!
Main Image: “Chat” by David Tan