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Siena has a long culinary tradition, and its gastronomy is as pure and simple as the ingredients it uses. The meat, the vegetables, and especially the olive oil are at the base of all main courses. Among the best known specialties we mention the Pici, a kind of big handmade spaghetti, originating in the area of Val D’orcia and Val di Chiana, usually topped with meat sauce or “all’aglione”,and ribollita, a vegetable and bean soup served on slices of grilled and garlicked bread, whose main ingredient is black cabbage, so called because if heated several times after cooking it improves its flavor. The mixed roasts include sausages, pork “costoleccio” (ribs), veal or beef loin, game and wild boar. The spices, products of high value in the past, confer the characteristic flavors to the sweets of the tradition, among which we mention the famous panforte, the Ricciarelli, the Pan Co ‘ Santi, the Copal, the cavallucci and the berricuocoli. Some news mentions Siena as the birthplace of the Tiramisu, (although in reality the paternity is disputed with Veneto). The realization of this dish would be due to the banquet organized in honor of the Grand Duke Cosimo III de ‘ Medici in occasion of his visit. The wines produced in the area include, Chianti, Chianti Classico, Chianti Colli Senesi, Chianti Superiore, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, Brunello di Montalcino and Vernaccia di San Gimignano.
PANFORTE DI SIENA
Ingredients: 150 gr of flour; 120 gr of walnut kernels; 120 gr of sweet almonds; 200 gr of candied fruit; Cinnamon; Nutmeg; Coriander; 200 gr of icing sugar; 150 gr of honey; 50 gr of vanilla sugar; 20 big hosts.
Preparation: Dry the walnuts and almonds in a very hot oven for 5 minutes, chop them up and put them in a container together with the candied fruit, cinnamon, nutmeg and coriander. Remove two tablespoons from the flour and add the rest to the dried fruit. Keep aside a tablespoon of icing sugar and put the rest to dissolve on the stove with a tablespoon of water and honey. When it begins to get stringy, combine it with the candied and dried fruits and amalgamate. Give the dough the shape of a very low round cake. Place the hosts at the bottom of the cake tin and pour in the mixture. Sprinkle with the sugar and the flour left aside. Cook for 30 minutes in the oven at 150 ° C.
Ingredients: 600 gr. of flour 0; 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil; 2 teaspoons of salt; lukewarm water. Sauce: 50 gr. of fresh garlic; 600 Gr. of peeled tomatoes (puree); grated pecorino cheese; extra virgin olive oil; Chili.
Preparation: Add to the flour the oil, a pinch of salt and the water and knead until you get a homogeneous dough, which you will cover with clingfilm and leave to rest for 2 hours. Take a piece of dough and work it in a roll, until it forms a long spaghettone of about 20/25 cm in length. To prevent them from sticking to each other put them on a tray with corn flour. For the sauce, peel the garlic, cut into slices and put in a crock pot with abundant extra virgin olive oil, brown over a low heat, then add the tomato paste, the chilli pepper, the salt and simmer for about 40 Minutes. In the meantime cook the Pici, and when they are al dente drain and dress with the sauce and grated pecorino.
Ingredients: 1 kg. of Pig’s blood (liquid); 300 Gr. of homemade bread crumbs; 100 Gr. candied cedar; 100 Gr. of pine nuts; Pork or beef guts; Nutmeg; Broth; Salt, pepper and spices.
Preparation: Boil the breadcrumbs in the broth so as to obtain a polenta. Let the blood clot, then pass it through a sieve pouring in a jug. Add the polenta of bread, seasoned with a little nutmeg, a pinch of spices, salt and pepper, adding the pine nuts and the cedar cut into small cubes. Introduce the mixture obtained in the closed casings, tying the end at a distance of about 4-5 cm from the compound level. Boil some water and immerge the guts. As soon as you see them floating, with a needle make a little hole in each one, then remove from the water and hang in a cool place to dry for at least a day. The mallegato is served cut into slices, which you can put in the pan, flavouting them in butter, or cooking them on embers.
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