Hidden treasures

What’s the traditional Redentore food?

Local Traditions
sarde-saor

What’s the traditional Redentore food?

The number one traditional celebration, celebrated every year the third weekend of July, Redentore gives thanks for the end of the terrible plague which decimated Venice’s population during the 16th century. Celebrations start on Saturday, with an extraordinary fireworks display, and continue on Sunday, with religious celebrations at the Church of the Redentore on the island of Giudecca and boat races. To make it easier for spectators to move around, a long floating bridge is erected, connecting Riva degli Schiavoni to the island of Giudecca! On the occasion of the Redentore, the whole of Venice prepares itself for intense celebrations... Particularly on Saturday night: don’t be surprised if you find colourful decorations, lanterns and long lavishly decked tables along the banks overlooking St Mark’s Basin, taking advantage of the privileged position to get the best view of the great fireworks display. The luckiest ones are those who watch the fireworks from the water surface, on board boats of all kinds, rigorously decorated for the occasion.

But what is the typical Redentore food, in keeping with traditions? Venetian cuisine’s top dishes couldn’t be missing, nor could seasonal fruit and a good dose of wine to water it all down!

As for recipes, the popular choices are:

  • Pasta e fasoi (Pasta with beans) – you can use different kinds of pasta for this dish, but traditionally it is made with the ‘tiracca trevigiana’, ‘ditalini’ or with rice; the beans can be whole, crushed or a bit of both, it all depends on how dry you like your dish! It is to be served lukewarm, with a drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese.
  • Sardee in saor (sweet and sour sardines) – fried sardines with onions, cooked in a pan with white vinegar; some variations also include raisins and pine nuts. The dish is served in a casserole dish: a layer of sardines, one of onions and so on. It is left to rest in the fridge for a few days.
  • Bigoi in salsa (pasta with sauce) – homemade pasta. According to tradition, you should use ‘bigoi’ from Bassano, but you can also use spaghetti with anchovies sauce and onion. The dish is served rigorously without parmesan cheese.
  • Anara col pien (stuffed duck) – stuffed duck with a stuffing made of salami, pork, parmesan cheese, heart and liver. Baked in the over and served lukewarm.
  • Bovoleti (thick escargots) – small land escargots boiled and seasoned with parsley, garlic and pepper. Left to rest for at least one day, served cold.

The seasonal fruit features watermelon as the undisputed protagonist of the Redentore Festival, offering a refreshing break before the fireworks!

Suspended between tradition and modernity, the Redentore remains one of the most important and emotional celebrations for Venetians.. If you happen to be in Venice on July 20th, we would suggest giving a look to all our suggestions on how best to enjoy the festive atmosphere of this evening. Between dinners in prestigious hotels with a view over the fireworks show and short boat excursions to watch the fireworks from a boat, we want to offer the best way to get into contact with this ancient and lively Venetian festival!

By Insidecom Editorial Staff

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