Five food souvenirs from Milano
Five delicious souvenirs you will get to know during the Old Milano Food Tour and are ideal to bring home when you visit Milan. This article also contains suggestions where to eat and where to buy them. Enjoy!
Let's start with something sweet: the chocolate from Zàini Milano, a milanese chocolate factory that produces, amongst others the Cioccolato Emilia, named after the babysitter of the family. Although Milan is less known for chocolate then their neighbour Turin, the family company that was founded in 1913, is still up and running. It took Zaini a 100 years to open their first store, exactly in the same spot as where they chocolate factory was founded, just of Piazza Gae Aulenti, near Corso Como.
The shop is the final stop of my food tour through Milan and has a wide assortment of chocolate bars with different flavours and for special occasions (think of Valentine's day and Christmas), they come-up with limited editions. Go and visit them and taste it yourself!
Bread is the base of nutrition in many countries. In Italy it is mostly eaten as a side-dish, to 'clean' your plate with (finishing the last bits of delicious pasta-sauces). For north-European people, the quality of Italian bread might be a bit delusive. However, if you find the right bakery, I am sure you like to bring some home. Think of the sourdough bread from Panificio Longoni by Davide Longoni, on sale at Mercato del Suffragio (where they have one of the best pizza in Milan) but also in his shop near Un posto a Milano (where they use the bread from Panificio Grazioli) and Bagni Misteriosi.
For the visitors of the Salone del Mobile.Milano that come to Ventura Projects, take a break at Panificio Danelli and enjoy their traditional made bread that comes from their hot oven a few times a day.
Each italian region has its own salami. Milan has, amongst others, the Salame Milanese, a mix of grinded meat and fat to which spices are added. You find it in every supermarket and at the butcher shop, but off course quality changes. If you want to bring home a small present to a friend or family, then buy the #caciotta from Ca' de Lassi, on sale during the Mercato della Terra di Milano (each first and third Saturday of the month). For more experienced salame-eaters, I suggest you go to Salumeria Strada & Zucca (we also go here during the Old Milano Food Tour) and buy there a Salame di Varzi DOP, a tasty piece of salame made only with the noble parts of the pigs. Tastes very good with a #michetta, the tipical milanes bun.
A chilo of risotto rice, for example that of Azienda agricola Camisani Fabio Pietro, on sale at Effecorta Milano. The farmers-family founded their business in 1861, when Italy became a Republic. As soon as the risotto grains are ready, they are husked in a mill that uses clean energy. What to do with when home? Act like Davide Oldani and create the typical risotto alla Milanese with safran from zafferanami, Mastri Speziali or Vallescuria.
Go here for a risotto recipe by Jamie Oliver.
Cheese (not 'just a cheese') Not many people know that the grana padano (kind of parmeggiano reggiano, or parmesan cheese) was 'invented' in the Abbazia di Chiaravalle, an abbey just a few km south of Milan. The same monks have been very important for the development of the agricultural and irrigation system that made Milan a wealthy city already in the 12th century. In the Parco Agricolo Sud di Milano, there are still a lot of cheesemakers, like Elisa from Azienda Agricola ZIPO. Their milk, yoghurt and cheeses are make with raw cow milk and change flavour with every season. On sale amongst others at Mercato della Terra di Milano and at Eataly Milano Smeraldo