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The cooking could be called “simple”, in that the dishes are not elaborate or sophisticated, but it certainly does the business. Along the route you will get to know the “ritual of the pasta sheet” traditionally home-made by the proud “Razdore” (typical local women who preside over housekeeping matters) who, with flour, eggs, water, salt and expertise, form a pasta sheet that is rounder than Giotto’s O and is as yellow as the sun. An old saying goes: if looking through it, towards Bologna, you see San Luca, then perfect tortellini it is sure to make. Sure of this, you can choose from the many “minestre” (these are not only broths) but also savour a wide variety of main dishes: typical of these zones are the mixed boiled meats, steaming and abundant. On the tables of Emilia-Romagna you will find crescentine, fried gnocco, coppa di testa, pork scratchings, cold cuts and other specialities that make meals so tasty and convivial. If you have washed everything down with his majesty Lambrusco, keep a drop aside and end the meal with a Basulan (or balson, depending on the zone), typical doughnut to dunk in the wine. The abundance of local sweets and fruits should be enjoyed with a glass of good nocino: the local liqueur whose preparation is a ritual that starts on the night of San Giovanni (24 June) with the harvest of the still green walnuts.

 Some specialities of the Emilia-Romagna lowlands:

  • Zampone del Pico at Mirandola
  • The salami and fritters from San Felice sul Panaro
  • The Bensone from San Felice sul Panaro
  • Parmigiano Reggiano and Pignoletto from Crevalcore
  • The Doughnut from Sant’Agata
  • The Melon and Water Melon from San Matteo della Decima, hamlet of Persiceto (typical production area) and from Crevalcore, Mirandola and San Felice sul Panaro
  • The famous “Africanetti di Persiceto” biscuits invented in San Giovanni
  • The Tortellone di Padulle from Sala Bolognese
  • The crescentine