Mantova (Mantua) Cuisine
Many foods are made in or around Mantova. One that we purchased is called "Sbrisolona", a cake made in Mantova. Now it is mass produced, but it can still be found handmade in bakers' shops,where we purchased ours. It is like a cookie & a cake combined & filled with Almonds. Delicious, but you need milk or some kind of drink with it because, like a crisp cookie, it needs moisture.
Another sweet made in Mantova, but by only one shop, is called "Palle di Rigoletto". It is a praline that commemorates Verdi's opera set in Mantua
Other pastry specialties are cakes called "Bignolata", "Pappa di Mantova", "Torta di Zucca", "Torta di Tagliatelle", & "Bussolani"
Also typical of the area is "Garlic Salami" produced by Mantuan factories who guarantee good quality. Excellent grilled or with rice.
Note: it does not keep well.
Cheeses that are eaten are "Grana Padano" Cheese (from left of the Po river) as well as "Parmigiano Reggiano" from right of the Po).
A typical menu includes "Tortelli", fresh pasta filled with pumpkin, which we tasted and thought was delicious. "Sorbir d' agnoli" is a popular dish which is usually served as a first course. It is a bowl of agnolini (meat ravioli) with broth and often a dash of Lambrusco!
"Risotto alla pilota" is another speciality. It is made with steamed Vialone Nano rice seasoned with minced pork or sausage fried in butter and Grana Padano or Parmigiano Reggiano. Risotto (rice) made with pumpkin, mushrooms, fish or shrimps is also popular.
We often saw "Luccio in salsa" on the menu which is a main course made of boiled pike served with a sauce made of pepper, capers, anchovies, and extra-virgin olive oil.
A little German influence"Cotechino con crauti" (pork sausage with sauerkraut) is also popular.
My favorite was a soup of bean and pasta (usually wide noodles).
Mantova (Mantua) has interesting cuisine, indeed.