Experiencing Agriturismo in Italy's Piedmont Region Print
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Written by Melissa Pellegrino and Matt Scialabba   
Langhe Peppers from PiedmontThe region of Piedmont is not one of the more famous regions of Italy -- certainly not as famous as Tuscany or Sicily -- but in terms of its abundance, it ranks right up there as one of the best. Truffles, Barolo and Barbaresco wines, chestnuts, and fabulous produce in every season, the region is a food lover’s dream. Adding to the beauty and character of the region is the fact that a majority of the farms are family-run and many have become agriturismi: working farms offering lodging and meals to adventurous travelers. We spent four months traveling through Northern Italy and working at the agriturismi. As chefs and cookbook writers, we learned about the close connection to the land and the rhythm of farm life and brought these experiences to our cookbook “The Italian Farmer's Table.”

In September, we will be taking a group to Piedmont to experience the agriturismo culture first hand.  For more information on what we think will be a great adventure, check out our website: liveit-italy.com/trips or contact Ashley at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 860-729-1185

To get you in the mood, here is a recipe from the Piedmont region – a great one if you (or your local farmers market) has a yield of peppers coming soon. (Click "read more" for recipe.)

LANGHE-STYLE PEPPERS WITH SALSA VERDE

Peperoni con Salsa Verde

In the summer and fall months, the local markets are ripe with extraordinarily large and vibrantly colored bell peppers, whose sweetness lends them to a host of different recipes. These sweet bell peppers spread with a pungent variation of salsa verde are a mainstay at Tra Sole e Vigne, where guests are presented a large assortment of antipasti each night.

2 red bell peppers
2 yellow bell peppers
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup of stale italian bread, crust removed and cut into 1/4-inch cubes
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 1/2 cups flat-leaf parsley
1 clove garlic
5 anchovy fillets
1 hard boiled egg + 1 hard boiled egg yolk
3 oz. Italian tuna packed in olive oil, drained
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Heat the oven to 400ºF (200ºC).

Rub peppers with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and place on a sheet pan.
Roast in the oven until browned and tender, about 30 minutes, turning halfway through. Remove from oven and immediately place in a plastic bag or a bowl covered with plastic wrap. Let rest for 20 minutes.

Soak the bread in 2 tablespoons of red wine vinegar for 30 minutes.

Mince the parsley, anchovy fillets, garlic, hard-boiled egg and yolk, and
tuna. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl. Chop the bread very fine and
stir into the parsley mixture. Add ¼ cup olive oil, season with salt and pepper to taste, and add the remaining tablespoon of red wine vinegar.

Remove peppers from the bag or bowl, peel the skin from the peppers,
and remove the seeds. Cut the peppers into strips about 2 inches thick.

Spread 1 tablespoon of the filling over each pepper strip. Drizzle with
the remaining tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil and serve at room temperature.

SERVES 6