Polenta al forno con bagna càuda.

Polenta al forno con bagna càuda. – F Ceragioli CC BY-SA 4.0

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Bagna càuda (AFI [ˈbaɲa ˈkɑʊ̯da], Piedmontese name translatable as “hot sauce” in Italian) is a typical gastronomic specialty of Piedmontese cuisine, originating in particular in Astesana, Langhe, Roero, Monferrato, the southern areas of the metropolitan city of Turin and the provinces of Cuneo, Alessandria, Asti, Vercelli, and Novara.

Preparation and consumption

Bagna càuda is a preparation based on garlic and desalted and boned anchovies, cooked over low heat in extra virgin olive oil, reducing everything to a sauce.
It is consumed by dipping various types of seasonal vegetables, usually divided between raw and cooked: cardoons, baked onions, raw or roasted peppers, raw cabbage leaves, cauliflower, Jerusalem artichokes, beets, steamed potatoes, radishes, turnips, and many others.
At one time, they used only cardi Gobbi, typical of Nizza Monferrato, Jerusalem artichokes, and peppers preserved in the rasp (what remained of the process of vinification of grapes).
Traditionally it is a typical dish of the grape harvest period, to be eaten mainly in autumn and winter: one of the “legends” about its birth is that it rewarded the grape pickers for their work.
More than a dish, it is a convivial rite that provides for the sharing of food in a collective form by the diners, which draw it all together from a single container.
The traditional bagna càuda was brought to the table in the dian, a terracotta cooking pot, and kept at temperature utilizing an earthenware warmer filled with live embers, the s-cionfetta.
To avoid the inconvenience of dipping into a single container, those far from the container had some difficulty. The inconvenience of allowing the unhygienic dipping into the standard container by each of the vegetables already bitten led to the adoption of individual terracotta containers (fojòt) consisting of a bowl to be subjected to a stove with alcohol or half or a wax lamp to keep the sauce hot.
Bagna càuda should pair with full-bodied red wines, such as Barbera, Nebbiolo, Barbaresco, or Dolcetto.

Regional Recipe from Piedmont.
Production area Langhe, Roero, Monferrato, Cuneese, Torino, Alessandrino, Astigiano and Novarese

Enrico Massetti was born in Milan, Italy.
Now he lives in Washington, DC, USA.
Still, he regularly visits his hometown
and enjoys going around all the places in his home country
especially those he can reach by public transportation.

Enrico loves writing guide books on travel in Italy
to help his friends that go to Italy to visit
and enjoy his old home country.
He also publishes books on the Argentine tango dance.

You can reach Enrico at enricomassetti@msn.com.