Benvenuti to the Barilla Test Kitchen!
This summer we presented a seminar at the Flavor Experience conference in Newport Beach, CA called “Not Your Nonna’s Italian” – about using authentic, regional Italian cuisine to stay modern and relevant with today’s consumer. Regional Italian cuisines hold a wealth of new ideas for American menus, which have been dominated for years by what I’d call Italian-American fare – largely adaptations of the southern Italian foods of the first wave of Italian immigrants to America.
WG penne with chicken , mix mushrooms and ParmigianoFeatured dish:  Whole Grain Penne with Creamy Mushroom Ragout, Peas, Parmigiano

Regional Italian food in general is a great fit with what today’s consumers are looking for, as it:

  • Is fresh, local and seasonal by nature
  • Offers a full range, from healthy to indulgent
  • Is often vegetarian, or just less meat-centric
  • Commonly features alternative proteins, from fish to lamb
  • Can be spicy, especially from certain regions

Let’s take a look at one of my favorite regions that’s lesser known, Trentino Alto Adige.

Regional Spotlight: Trentino 


  • Located in northeast Italy, in the Dolomite Alps
  • Strong Tyrolean influence, an ancient alpine culture straddling today’s Austrian and Italian borders
  • Mix of central European and Venetian cuisines
  • Favored ingredients include forest mushrooms, cow’s milk cheeses, sausages
  • Harsh winters led to use of whole grains, fermented vegetables, smoked meats, stale bread gnocchi (canerderli)


Lorenzo Boni Lo Res RGB

For more on Trentino Alto Adige, click here.

Lorenzo Boni, Executive Chef, Barilla America