Over 40 delightful recipes for Venetian bar bites, cocktails and spritzes that will transport you to the stone streets that line the interconnected canals of la Serenissima.
Arguably the most seductive city in the world, Venice exudes magic and mystery, history and tradition, so it comes as no surprise that a city which delights at every turn should have a few little-known treasures to discover, too. Not least the custom of enjoying cicchetti (pronounced `chee-keh-tee'). Discover the charms of a small but bustling bacaro, where traditionally a glass of wine, known as an `ombra', is served together with a selection of small plates or `cicchetti'.
There are over 40 recipes starting with Verdura (vegetables) including Rosemary Roasted Chickpeas, Venetian Cheese with Cipolline in Agrodolce and Fig & Blue Cheese Pizzette; or try simple Pesce (fish) plates of Mixed Fried Fish, Soft Shell Crab with Lemon & Caper Mayonnaise, Red Mullet in Saor and Scallops with Borlotti Beans. Also featured are Carne (meat) recipes for Artichokes with Taleggio Cheese & Prosciutto, Calves' Liver with Onions & Potato, Speck & Smoked Ricotta Crocchette. Finish up a selection of Crostini & Tramezzini (breads) as well as Bevande (drinks) to do as the Venetians do.
Venetians love to linger a while with friends, chatting over these wonderful morsels and a glass of wine, a Spritz or Campari Soda, but cicchetti make perfect food for entertaining at home, too. Whether for pre-dinner nibbles, or a full blown party, bring a little taste of Italy to your kitchen at home.
Liz Franklin was food editor of Good Health magazine and is now a freelance cook, food writer and stylist who runs a cookery and wine education school in Italy. Based in the south of England, for Ryland Peters and Small she has also written Oils & Vinegars (978-1-84597-596-8), Cooking Italian with Kids (978-1-84597-703-0), Tea & Treats (978-1-84975-497-2) and The Cookie Jar (978-1-89475-655-6).