Today I had the magical experience to witness the victory of Italy while I was in the Little Italy district of New York City.
Check out the pictures of the street celebrations.
In the past few years, imported Italian groceries have become increasingly common in US stores. Yet, every time we come back from Italy, we bring along a full suitcase of hard-to-find Italian food that help us mitigate successfully our homesickness.
This is our top 10 list of Italian products that we regularly bring back after a trip to Italy:
– Coffee (the most popular brands are Lavazza and Illy).
– Extra-virgin olive oil. The choice is wide, but a lot depends on how much you want to spend. Usually the ones sold in dark green glass bottles are the best.
– Tuna in extra-virgin olive oil.
– Spices for meat and fish dishes. The most famous one is called Ariosto and it’s a blend of the main aromatic herbs used in the Italian cuisine.
– Cookies and pastry products: everything which is branded Mulino Bianco and Ferrero is worth trying.
– Nutella, the original one.
– Senape (mustard). Orco is the brand we recommend. Italians use the senape with their meat dishes, especially sausages, but also chicken and pork.
– Panna Cotta mix, a smooth, silky and creamy dessert.
– Fiesta sponge cakes by Ferrero filled with orange cream and covered with chocolate.
– Gianduja chocolate, the original with hazelnuts specifically grown in the Piedmont hills.
What do you bring back from your trip to Italy?
(Check out our new eBook for additional 350+ practical tips about visiting Italy).
I personally love grocery shopping in Italy. The variety and quality of the food available is simply excellent. If you are used to shop in US stores, you may notice a few differences:
– Carts are free to use but you often need a Euro coin deposit to unlock the cart from the rack
– At the cash register, you’ll have only one option: plastic bags
– Bags are subject to an ‘environmental’ fee of about Euro 0.05
– No one will help you place your groceries in the bags