Radicchio Rosso di Treviso: IGP Status
Red Radicchio of Treviso can be either Precocious and Tardive.
The first one, the Precocious Radicchio – the one you see in the picture and has been used for the recipe “Tagliatelle with Red Radicchio of Treviso” – has vivid red leaves with white mottles and large white ribs that form a compact bunch. The Tardive Radicchio has much more tapered ribs and its splayed leaves curl slightly at their ends.
Obviously, Radicchio Precocious comes into season first, but although it might be the prittier looking, Radicchio Tardive is the more flavourful and the most appreciated because of its strong bitter taste.
Both Precocious and Tardive radicchio now have the IGP status (“Indicazione Geografica Protetta” – Protected Geografhical origin), which is reserved only to the products grown around the area of Treviso, and has been put under the supervision , and the guarantee, of the “Consortium of Radicchio of Treviso”.
How to eat Radicchio of Treviso
Radicchio of Treviso can be eaten either raw or cooked. Bare in mind that it has a slightly bitter taste: it is the beauty of it! Period!
If served as a salad, a vinegary dressing will be very pleasant, especially if enriched with walnuts or pine-nuts.
Otherwise, Radicchio can be cut longwise in quarters and braised in a frying pan with extra virgin olive oil, garlic, vinegar and seasoned with freshly crushed black pepper and salt. It can be served even cold, after chilling it in a box with fresh vinegar and oil, fresh garlic and thyme according to taste.
Also, if chopped or finely minced, Radicchio of Treviso can be cooked in milk cream based sauces and added with pancetta or Italian sausage as in the following recipe.
“Tagliatelle with Red Radicchio of Treviso”: a classic of the Venetian culinary tradition.
This is a classic recipe in Veneto: milk cream, Red Radicchio of Treviso and either pancetta or sausage. This sauce can be used on many shapes of pasta: tagliatelle or pappardelle if you choose to have fresh hand made pasta, or penne or mezze-maniche if you prefer durum wheat pasta. I wouldn’t suggest to have spaghetti or bucatini with it, since they wouldn’t collect the cream well enough.
You can find the recipe in here.