Embark on a gastronomic journey through Italy’s culinary wonders, as we explore a tantalizing selection of Italian foods that start with the letter “E.”
Elicoidali is a type of pasta that hails from Italy. This pasta variety features a tubular shape with ridges on the outer surface. The name “elicoidali” is derived from the Italian word “elica,” meaning “helix” or “spiral,” which aptly describes the shape of this pasta. The ridges on the surface of elicoidali help to trap and hold sauces, making it a great choice for hearty and robust pasta dishes. Elicoidali is often used in baked pasta recipes such as pasta al forno or pasta casseroles. Its hollow center and ridged exterior make it perfect for capturing and absorbing the flavors of the accompanying sauces, cheeses, and other ingredients.
2. Erba cipollina
Erba cipollina, also known as chives, is a versatile herb commonly used in Italian cuisine. It is characterized by its slender and hollow green stalks, which have a mild onion-like flavor. Erba cipollina is often used as a garnish or ingredient to add a fresh and delicate onion taste to various dishes. It is commonly sprinkled over soups, salads, omelets, and creamy sauces. The vibrant green color and subtle flavor of erba cipollina make it an excellent addition to both cooked and raw preparations, enhancing the overall taste and visual appeal of Italian dishes.
3. Erbazzone Reggiano
Erbazzone Reggiano is a traditional savory pie from the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy. It is made with a flaky pastry crust filled with a mixture of Swiss chard or spinach, eggs, pancetta or bacon, Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, and various herbs and spices. The pie is baked until golden and the filling is set. Erbazzone Reggiano is a delicious and nourishing dish that highlights the use of seasonal greens and the rich flavors of the region.
In Italian cuisine, “erbe” refers to herbs, which play a fundamental role in adding flavor and aroma to a wide range of dishes. Italian cuisine is known for its use of fresh herbs, such as basil, rosemary, sage, thyme, and parsley, among others. These herbs are used to season sauces, soups, stews, roasted meats, pasta dishes, and salads, enhancing the taste and adding depth to the overall flavor profile. Erbe are often used in combination to create herb blends that are added to various recipes, providing a distinctive Italian touch and enhancing the natural taste of ingredients. The use of erbe in Italian cooking is a testament to the country’s emphasis on using fresh, quality ingredients to create delicious and aromatic dishes.
6. Erbe fini
Erbe fini refers to a mixture of finely chopped herbs used as a flavoring in Italian cuisine. This mixture typically includes a combination of fresh herbs such as basil, parsley, rosemary, thyme, and sage. Erbe fini is often added to stocks, broths, sauces, and stews to infuse them with a vibrant herbal essence. The finely chopped herbs release their flavors more readily, dispersing their aromatic qualities throughout the dish. This mixture of erbe fini adds a burst of freshness, fragrance, and complexity to Italian recipes, elevating the overall taste and enhancing the culinary experience.
7. Esse di Raveo
Esse di Raveo are S-shaped cookies that originate from the Friuli-Venezia Giulia region in northeastern Italy. These delicate and buttery cookies are made with a simple dough consisting of flour, sugar, butter, and eggs. The dough is shaped into elongated “S” or “8” shapes, which give the cookies their distinctive appearance. Esse di Raveo are baked until lightly golden and have a crisp texture that contrasts with their tender interior. These delightful cookies are often enjoyed with a cup of coffee or tea and make a lovely addition to dessert platters or gift baskets. With their elegant shape and delicious flavor, Esse di Raveo showcase the craftsmanship and culinary traditions of the Friuli-Venezia Giulia region.
8. Eggplant Parmigiana
Eggplant Parmigiana, or Melanzane alla Parmigiana, is a classic Italian dish that has become popular worldwide. Despite its name, it is not directly associated with the city of Parma but rather with the Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese used in the recipe. This dish features sliced eggplant that is typically breaded and fried until golden brown, then layered with tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, and grated Parmigiano-Reggiano. The layers are repeated and the dish is baked until the cheese is melted and bubbly. The result is a hearty and flavorful combination of tender eggplant, tangy tomato sauce, and creamy melted cheese. Eggplant Parmigiana is a beloved Italian comfort food that highlights the versatility of eggplant and the rich flavors of Italian cuisine.
Escarole is a leafy green vegetable that is widely used in Italian cuisine. It belongs to the chicory family and has broad, curly leaves with a slightly bitter flavor. Escarole is versatile and can be enjoyed both raw and cooked. In Italian cooking, it is commonly used in soups, particularly in the famous Italian dish called Escarole and Bean Soup (Zuppa di Scarola e Fagioli). The leaves are also used in salads, providing a refreshing and slightly bitter taste that pairs well with other ingredients. Additionally, escarole can be sautéed or braised as a side dish, where its mild bitterness is balanced by cooking and complemented with garlic, olive oil, and seasonings. Escarole is a nutritious and flavorful ingredient that adds a unique touch to Italian dishes, contributing to the diverse culinary tapestry of the country.
10. Espresso Affogato
Espresso Affogato is a delightful Italian dessert that combines the richness of espresso with the creaminess of gelato or ice cream. A scoop of vanilla gelato or ice cream is placed in a small bowl or glass, and then a shot of hot espresso is poured over it. The heat from the espresso causes the gelato to melt slightly, creating a luscious combination of flavors and textures. The bitterness of the espresso pairs beautifully with the sweetness of the gelato, resulting in a harmonious balance. Espresso Affogato is a popular dessert option in Italy, especially during the summer months when a refreshing and indulgent treat is desired. It is a simple yet elegant dessert that showcases the beauty of contrasting flavors and temperatures.
11. Estratto di Pomodoro
Estratto di Pomodoro, or tomato paste, is a staple ingredient in Italian cuisine. It is made by cooking down ripe tomatoes until they become thick and concentrated, resulting in a deep red paste with intense tomato flavor. Tomato paste is used as a flavor enhancer and a base for various Italian dishes, including pasta sauces, stews, soups, and braises. Its concentrated nature allows it to add richness, depth, and complexity to recipes, transforming simple ingredients into robust and flavorful creations. While the process of making tomato paste is not exclusive to Italy, it has become an essential ingredient in Italian cooking, showcasing the importance of tomatoes in the country’s culinary heritage.
10. Eliche al Ragu
Eliche al Ragu is a pasta dish featuring eliche, a corkscrew-shaped pasta, tossed in a rich and hearty meat-based ragu sauce. The ragu sauce typically consists of ground meat (such as beef, veal, or pork), tomatoes, onions, garlic, herbs, and spices. The sauce is slow-cooked to develop deep flavors and is then combined with the cooked pasta. Eliche al Ragu is a comforting and satisfying dish that showcases the beloved combination of pasta and meat sauce in Italian cuisine.
11. Etruscan Soup
Etruscan Soup, also known as Zuppa Etrusca, is a traditional Tuscan soup that has its roots in ancient Etruscan cuisine. It typically consists of a combination of beans, vegetables (such as cabbage, carrots, celery, and onions), and cured meats (such as pancetta or prosciutto). The soup is simmered slowly to develop its flavors and is often served with a drizzle of olive oil and grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Etruscan Soup is a nourishing and satisfying dish that pays homage to the culinary heritage of the Etruscan civilization.
12. Estratto di Carne
Estratto di Carne, also known as meat extract, is a concentrated paste made from meat, typically beef or chicken. It is used as a flavor enhancer and base for sauces, soups, and gravies. To create estratto di carne, meat is simmered for a long time, allowing the flavors to concentrate. The resulting liquid is then reduced and processed into a concentrated paste or powder. Estratto di Carne adds depth and richness to Italian dishes, elevating their flavors.