9 Fruits and Vegetables to Know

How well do you know Italian fruit and vegetables? Have you discovered the culinary delights of cooking with fragrant bergamot from Calabria or an earthy risotto rich with porcini?

Italy boasts a particularly fine selection of homegrown fruit and vegetables each absorbing the characteristics of the unique environment in which they are grown, from forested hillsides to waterlogged plains, the soil and climate all help cultivate some very special produce. 

From the world-famous porcini to the unusual red eggplant from Rotunda, we introduce you to nine Italian favourites.

Each comes with its own personality and is big on flavour and style. Take a look and see which you’ll be trying out in the kitchen.

Italian Delicacies: 9 Fruits and Vegetables to Know

Gourmet Artichoke

Italy is the queen of artichokes, boasting almost half of the world’s artichoke production. From purple to thorny find out all about Italy’s gourmet artichokes and how to enjoy them at their finest.



This fragrant Mediterranean citrus fruit is highly sought after by chefs around the world for its versatile use in both sweet and savoury cooking. Find out all about bergamot here.


Mantova Pumpkin

This sweet and delicate pumpkin is famous throughout northern Italy. Try the popular pumpkin tortelli from Mantova and you’ll soon understand why. Find out all about Mantua pumpkin here.


Vesuvian Apricot

These precious apricots are grown in a special area of Southern Italy in Calabria. Find out more here and discover these sweet summer fruits.


Pachino Tomatoes

These much loved Sicilian tomatoes will transport you to the sun-soaked island with one bite. They’re best eaten fresh with a hint of extra virgin olive oil according to the purists! Find out more here.



This prized vegetable comes with a hefty price tag thanks to some particular growing conditions. Locals say it’s best enjoyed in a creamy risotto. Find out all about Trevisio radiccio here.


Gourmet Asparagus

These tasty green spikes can be found in various countries around the world, but Italy boasts some particularly refined varieties. Try them with a fried egg and some shavings of Grana Padano for a delicious light dinner. Find out all about gourmet asparagus here.


Red Eggplant from Rotunda

This unusual looking aubergine might get mistaken for a tomato but its reputation is “devilish”. Find out why here.



Mushroom hunting is a popular pastime in Italy, where nothing quite beats the bounty of this autumn jewels. Find out more about porcini mushroom here as well as how to cook porcini mushrooms.

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Post Author: MNS Master

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