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It is a treasure of Italian gastronomy which has also been attributed a World Day, although it was once a dish consumed mainly by poor families. Have you ever tried it?
A traditional delight that is born as waste
It is a delicious dish that has been prepared and served on Italian tables for years, but which was once consumed only by the poorest families. The tripe therefore did not have the same value as it is given today.
It was a dish that was discarded by the nobles because it was made with the entrails of animals. In those days, organs were simply considered waste and were not as popular as they are today.
The poorer families were therefore the main consumers of tripe. They served it in large terracotta bowls mixed with herbs and spices. It was a really energetic dish, and it was ideal for them.
Today, however, the situation has changed, and tripe has become a treasure of Italian gastronomy. People like it so much that even a world day has been dedicated to it, which falls on October 24, the so-called “tripe day”.
An explosion of flavours
The first (certain) traces of tripe belong to the 1800s, but in reality, it seems that this dish has much more ancient origins. In fact, it seems that it was used by the ancient Romans to stuff sausages, and that it was even cooked on the grill by the Greeks and then served with spices.
Today, however, tripe is prepared in a totally different way. It is cooked over low heat for about 2 hours in a pot. But first comes a savoury sauté made with garlic, onion, celery, and carrot, to which tripe is then added. Everything must be browned and then blended with red wine.
Finally the tomato puree is added, after which it is left to cook over low heat for 2 hours. In this way the various ingredients become so soft that they melt in your mouth, giving the palate a real explosion of flavours.
Incredible variations and where to find them
Clearly, over time, each region has come up with its own version of tripe. In Rome, this incredible dish is accompanied by a sauté that is prepared with the classic smells and, inevitably, bacon. At the end of the cooking process, a mint leaf is added to the tripe in the pot, which gives freshness to the dish and guarantees incredible flavours.
In Tuscany, on the other hand, it is inserted inside a crunchy sandwich, to make the irresistible lampredotto, one of the foundations of the Tuscan tradition. In Lucca, tripe is flavoured differently, with cheese and cinnamon.
In Milan, on the other hand, it is accompanied by beans and a sautéed sauce based on aromas and crispy bacon.
In some regions of Italy, tripe is even prepared with fish. The preparation and ingredients are identical to those of the original recipe, but the result is nothing short of incredible. The delicacy of the fish is combined with the many flavours, paired with the cheese which generates a real explosion of flavours on the palate. It is absolutely NOT to be passed up on.