ITALIAN CUISINE COOKING CLASS

Discovering Tuscany is a job for all senses, especially taste. Culinary tradition is king in Italy, and especially here, and a major part of the cultural experience of visiting the region. High-quality local products create a deep bond with this area’s identity and through these cooking class you, as well as Tuscans, will have the opportunity to go deep down the roots of Tuscany and learn the secrets of this cuisine, with a course held in a charming villa of 700.

Choose from three menus and once you understand which one you prefer, you will be shown all the necessary steps to create marvelous soups like the famous ribollita or the pappa al pomodoro, homemade pasta such as tagliatelle, pappardelle and tagliolini. You will also master the art of pairing each past with its most suitable sauce. Learn how to make bread and ‘schiacciata’ – schiacciata all’olio is one of Tuscany’s top bakery treats.
It’s a type of flat bread made with flour, water, yeast, salt and olive oil, produced daily at your local “forno” or “Panetteria”.

Schiacciata literally means “squashed” and depending on the area where it’s made, it can also be called ciaccia, schiaccia, focaccia or ciaccino.

You will learn how to create desserts such as tiramisu or fruit tarts. Your cooking class will end with a deserved tasting, where students will sample first hand all the delicious dishes prepared during the course of the day.

And that’s not all. Every dish can be accompanied by excellent local wine.

Would you like to be lead and taught how to choose a good wine to be paired with food?
This tour can also include a visit to a winery that produces high quality wines meeting an expert local guide who will explain what is involved in the wine making process, including anecdotes and interesting news.

Once back at home, you’ll know to surprise everybody with your food-making and wine-pairing new skills!

Private tour for small groups
Departure from an agreed meeting point or pick-up to Poggio Baronti
Professional driver
Cooking Class + Food tastings
Return to Poggio Baronti
About 3 hours tour
Languages: Italian, English + French and Spanish on request

Italian cuisine is food typical from Italy. It has developed through centuries of social and economic changes, with roots stretching to antiquity.

Italian cuisine is generally characterized by its simplicity, with many dishes having only two to four main ingredients. Italian cooks rely chiefly on the quality of the ingredients rather than on elaborate preparation. Ingredients and dishes vary by region. Many dishes that were once regional, have proliferated with variations throughout the country.

Discover the most famous Italian Cuisine Ingredients:
Pesto, a Ligurian sauce made out of basil, olive oil and pine nuts, and which can be eaten with pasta or other dishes such as soup.

Italian cuisine has a great variety of different ingredients which are commonly used, ranging from fruits, vegetables, sauces, meats, etc. In the North of Italy, fish (such as cod, or baccalà), potatoes, rice, corn (maize), sausages, pork, and different types of cheeses are the most common ingredients. Pasta dishes with use of tomato are spread in all Italy. Italians like their ingredients fresh and subtly seasoned and spiced.

In Northern Italy though there are many kinds of stuffed pasta, polenta and risotto are equally popular if not more so. Ligurian ingredients include several types of fish and seafood dishes; basil (found in pesto), nuts and olive oil are very common. In Emilia-Romagna, common ingredients include ham (prosciutto), sausage (cotechino), different sorts of salami, truffles, grana, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and tomatoes (Bolognese sauce or ragù).

Olive oil is the most commonly used vegetable fat in Italian cooking, and as the basis for sauces, often replaces animal fats of butter or lard.

Traditional Central Italian cuisine uses ingredients such as tomatoes, all kinds of meat, fish, and pecorino cheese. In Tuscany pasta (especially pappardelle) is traditionally served with meat sauce (including game meat). Finally, in Southern Italy, tomatoes – fresh or cooked into tomato sauce – peppers, olives and olive oil, garlic, artichokes, oranges, ricotta cheese, eggplants, zucchini, certain types of fish (anchovies, sardines and tuna), and capers are important components to the local cuisine.

Italian cuisine is also well known (and well regarded) for its use of a diverse variety of pasta. Pasta include noodles in various lengths, widths and shapes. Distinguished on shapes they are named—penne, maccheroni, spaghetti, linguine, fusilli, lasagne and many more varieties that are filled with other ingredients like ravioli and tortellini.

The word pasta is also used to refer to dishes in which pasta products are a primary ingredient. It is usually served with sauce. There are hundreds of different shapes of pasta with at least locally recognized names.

Examples include spaghetti (thin rods), rigatoni (tubes or cylinders), fusilli (swirls), and lasagne (sheets). Dumplings, like gnocchi (made with potatoes or pumpkin) and noodles like spätzle, are sometimes considered pasta. They are both traditional in parts of Italy.
Pasta is categorized in two basic styles: dried and fresh. Dried pasta made without eggs can be stored for up to two years under ideal conditions, while fresh pasta will keep for a couple of days in the refrigerator. Pasta is generally cooked by boiling. Under Italian law, dry pasta (pasta secca) can only be made from durum wheat flour or durum wheat semolina, and is more commonly used in Southern Italy compared to their Northern counterparts, who traditionally prefer the fresh egg variety.

Durum flour and durum semolina have a yellow tinge in color. Italian pasta is traditionally cooked al dente (Italian: firm to the bite, meaning not too soft). Outside Italy, dry pasta is frequently made from other types of flour, but this yields a softer product that cannot be cooked al dente. There are many types of wheat flour with varying gluten and protein levels depending on variety of grain used.

Particular varieties of pasta may also use other grains and milling methods to make the flour, as specified by law. Some pasta varieties, such as pizzoccheri, are made from buckwheat flour. Fresh pasta may include eggs (pasta all’uovo ‘egg pasta’). Whole wheat pasta has become increasingly popular because of its supposed health benefits over pasta made from refined flour.

Regional variation: Each area has its own specialties, primarily at a regional level, but also at provincial level. The differences can come from a bordering country (such as France or Austria), whether a region is close to the sea or the mountains, and economics. Italian cuisine is also seasonal with priority placed on the use of fresh produce.

Discover the most famous Tuscan Cuisine Products:
Simplicity is central to the Tuscan cuisine. Legumes, bread, cheese, vegetables, mushrooms and fresh fruit are used. A good example would be ribollita, a notable Tuscan soup whose name literally means “reboiled”. Like most Tuscan cuisine, the soup has peasant origins.

It was originally made by reheating (i.e. reboiling) the leftover minestrone or vegetable soup from the previous day. There are many variations but the main ingredients always include leftover bread, cannellini beans and inexpensive vegetables such as carrot, cabbage, beans, silverbeet, cavolo nero (Tuscan kale), onion and olive oil.

A regional Tuscan pasta known as pici resembles thick, grainy-surfaced spaghetti, and is often rolled by hand. White truffles from San Miniato appear in October and November. High-quality beef, used for the traditional Florentine steak, come from the Chianina cattle breed of the Chiana Valley and the Maremmana from Maremma.

Pork is also produced. The region is well-known also for its rich game, especially wild boar, hare, fallow deer, roe deer and pheasant that often are used to prepare pappardelle dishes. Regional desserts include panforte (prepared with honey, fruits and nuts), ricciarelli (biscuits made using an almond base with sugar, honey and egg white), and cavallucci (cookies made with almonds, candied fruits, coriander, flour, honey). Well-known regional wines include Brunello di Montalcino, Carmignano, Chianti, Morellino di Scansano, Parrina, Sassicaia, Vernaccia di San Gimignano.

Every region has its own holiday recipes. During La Festa di San Giuseppe (St. Joseph’s Day) on 19 March, Sicilians give thanks to St. Joseph for preventing a famine during the Middle Ages. The fava bean saved the population from starvation, and is a traditional part of St. Joseph’s Day altars and traditions. Other customs celebrating this festival include wearing red clothing, eating Sicilian pastries known as zeppole and giving food to the poor.

On Easter Sunday, lamb is served throughout Italy. A typical Easter Sunday breakfast in Umbria and Tuscany includes salami, boiled eggs, wine, Easter Cakes and pizza. The common cake for Easter Day is the Colomba Pasquale (literally, Easter dove), which is often simply known as “Italian Easter cake” abroad. It is supposed to represent the dove, and is topped with almonds and pearl sugar.

On Christmas Eve a symbolic fast is observed with the cena di magro (“light dinner”), a meatless meal. Typical cakes of the Christmas season are panettone and pandoro.

The Chianti Hills in Tuscany are a short mountain range straddling the provinces of Florence, Siena and Arezzo that mark the eastern border of the Chianti region with the Valdarno and the Val di Chiana. The highest peak is that of Monte San Michele in the town of Greve in Chianti in the province of Florence.

The hills of Chianti are famous for the vineyards from which you get a wine known throughout the world.

The remaining territory is instead mainly hilly and the municipalities present in this area are part of the production area of ​​Chianti, DOCG red wine.

EXPERIENCE THE ITALIAN CUISINE COOKING CLASS

We never fail to impress. Soak up the sun, style, and sophistication of Tuscany and start planning your trip to Poggio Baronti today.
Experience the real Italian cooking class, surprise everybody with your food-making and wine-pairing new skills.