WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 10, 2012
Genova on the Italian Riviera
|Lanterna di Genova – the lighthouse of the port of Genoa|
Genova or Genoa is still Italy’s principal seaport serving regattas, commercial and cruise destinations. The city makes a good excursion base or starting point for a range of driving, sea-borne, food tours, walking and cycling trips exploring the famous tourist villages and hillscapes along the World Heritage site of the Italian Riviera. A popular destination for tourists due to the area’s mild climate, the charm of its old fishing ports and the beauty of its landscapes is enriched by it’s particularly rustic food and wine traditions. Many villages and towns in the area, such as Portofino, Bordighera, Lerici, and the Cinque Terre are known the world over.
Local food n walk tour host Nick Garrett (foodnwalktours.com) has been living and working in the area for ten years thinks the region has a lot more to offer.
”Without a doubt the scenic beauty is something to last a lifetime but it just starts there, for me it’s the amazing foods, landscape and walks that fascinate the new adventure visitor… and the food is a unique blend of rich Parma ingredients and delicious Ligurian twists”.
Check out this great video of the region, so you can see how beautiful the area is and all the fantastic things there are to do when you come for a visit!
|The Italian Riviera|
A Little History:
During the Roman Empire era, Genoa was a major shipping port for goods made locally. After the downfall of the Roman Empire, Genoa became an independent city. In the 11th century, a short- lived alliance between Genoa and Pisa took control over Sicily and Corsica. Later, the two cities waged war against each other for the control of the two islands and Genoa defeated Pisa. After this, the merchants governing Genoa had power comparable only to the Pope and the kings of the European states. During the Crusades, Genoa’s wealth and strength continued to grow and expand and, as a result, they were able to acquire more possessions and trading privileges.
|Salt extraction during the Middle Ages.|
Salt production was a necessity of life and a vital commodity for food storage in medieval society. It also served as money at various times and places, and it has been the cause of bitter warfare. Genoa imported salt from Sardinia and Provence and delivered it across the Alpine passes into Switzerland. The expansion of Genoa’s trade and land acquisitions caused concern in the region, especially from the Venetians. This long-standing conflict for dominance of the eastern Mediterranean Sea between the Republic of Genoa and the Republic of Venice led to war in 1256.
|The Port of Genoa|
What To Do In Genoa
For Music Lovers:
Take the Culatello Verdi Tour
|Carlo Felice Opera House|
Some great places to see in Genoa are the Palace of the Doges, the medieval Church of San Donato, the Carlo Felice Opera House (dating back to the 19th century), the 16th century churches of St. Ambrose and the Annunciation, as well as, other Renaissance palaces and buildings. Walls and forts are abundant throughout the city and the narrow streets of the harbor area are intriguing.
|Piazza de Ferrari|
One popular attraction is the lighthouse called Lanterna, which dates back to the 16th century. This lighthouse is an important “landmark” for Genoa. In 1992, Renzo Piano was credited for redesigning the Old Port. A modern aquarium and a tropical greenhouse are located there. Genoa has a university, which was founded in 1243, and a few museums.
|The Regatta of the Ancient Sea Republics|
Genoa’s maritime presence is still very strong, which can be sensed throughout the entire area. ”The Regatta of the Ancient Sea Republics”, involves Genoa, Pisa, Venice and Amalfi in a yearly navigational competition. The regatta rotates among the four areas and occurs every fourth year in Genoa.
At the base of all recipes is Ligurian olive oil, delicately flavored and perfect for preparing sauces.
The most famous of these is pesto, a sauce made of basil, pine nuts, garlic, olive oil, and parmesan cheese. Some other well-known sauces from this region are salsa verde, a green sauce made of parsley and pine nuts for grilled meat, and salsa di noci, a walnut sauce that goes perfectly over pasta and ravioli.
Some typical second courses include: Cappon Magro, an elaborate dish made of fish and boiled vegetables and seasoned with a sauce of herbs and pine nuts. Other popular dishes are Fritto Misto (mixed deep-fried seafood), L’insalata di Pesce (seafood salad), Triglie (mullet) alle Genovese, Stoccafisso in Agrodolce, cod in sweet and sour sauce with pine nuts and raisins, Mussels alla Marinara and Stuffed Anchovies.
|Mussels alla Marinara|
You can learn to make some of these fabulous Italian dishes by attending cooking classes with the Food n Walk Tours in Parma, Italy.
Here is the contact: http://gustoitalia.wordpress.com/our-3-kings-tours/cooking-lessons-click-here/
Wines of Liguria
The Marea Cinque Terre is made from a blend of several traditional local grape varieties: Bosco, Vermentino, and Albarola. The result is a full-bodied, earthy wine of immense character with a deeper golden tint. This wine is an excellent choice to accompany the Linguine with Basil Pesto recipe featured below.
- 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup pine nuts (pignoli)
- 1 and 1/4 cups tightly packed young basil leaves
- 1 garlic clove, peeled
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano
LINGUINE WITH BASIL PESTO
- 1 pound linguine
- 1 recipe for basil pesto, from above
- 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded
- Fresh cracked black pepper
Resources in Planning a Trip to Genoa, Italy:
|A crowded beach at Monterosso on the Italian Riviera|
Food n Walk Tours http://gustoitalia.wordpress.com/our-3-kings-tours/
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Visit a parmigiano reggiano factory <http://gustoitalia.wordpress.