The Italian food of the Veneto region poses a perplexing question: With so many dishes to choose from, how can anyone have only one favorite? Given the great regional variations within the region, not to mention between Veneto and the rest of the country, there are a lot of unique dishes waiting for you to discover them. However, if risotto is something you crave, Veneto is definitely for you.

Other than pasta, risotto is one of the most famous of Italian foods. And if some of the greatest Italian food dishes in existence are what you’re looking for, Veneto is a place you must visit, at least via the dinner table.

Risotto is a specific way of cooking rice, and is growing in popularity to take it’s rightful place alongside pasta in the pantheon of Italian food, like many specialties of the Veneto region. To make a true risotto, the rice must first be cooked in olive oil or butter.

The rice must be coated evenly in the butter oil, and toasted just until translucent. Broth is then added just a little at a time, the idea is to slowly saturate the rice with the broth, which helps it achieve it’s distinctive risotto texture. Unless the rice is toasted, it’s not risotto. Even if it’s served at the finest of Italian food restaurants, it just isn’t the same unless toasted.

Risotto is an incredibly versatile dish; almost anything may be added to it. Because of the diversity of high quality local ingredients in the Veneto region, this makes for a fascinating variety of risottos to be tried. The local specialty (for example, seafood and fish in coastal areas) tends to put in an appearance in the risotto.

The possibilities go far beyond seafood though, all sorts of fresh local specialties show up in the Veneto region. Pumpkin, asparagus, even radicchio turn up in these local gems. Frog legs may even be found, a more commonplace part of Italian food than many would suppose.

Italian food differs from the stereotype held by many; this is doubly true in the Veneto region, which features some wonderful dishes not found elsewhere in the country. Pasta and beans, for instance is a very popular dish in Veneto and is turning up at more and more Italian restaurants all the time.

Anchovy, as well as stockfish are present in some dishes of the Veneto region. But the popularity of sausages dwarfs that of the humble anchovy, with the local dry-cured, pressed salami (sopressata) and garlic salami being special favorites.

In Veneto, the Italian food prominently features the local produce; radicchio and asparagus are things the Veneto region is well known for, as are peas with rice. This is a dish found only in Veneto, and is something of a departure from what Italian food is generally assumed to be.

The Veneto region offers many different choices for the discriminating diner. From sopressata to vegetable dishes to it’s unparalleled risotto, the Italian food of Veneto is an embarrassment of riches. If you require risotto to make it an Italian meal, the foods of Veneto are just the thing for you. With so many unique dishes, Veneto has enough different, wonderful Italian food for everybody.

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