Who would have thought that my culinary adventure in Italy would include eating donkey pasta? Hard to believe? Then read on…
After a long scenic walk around Verona, we crossed the Ponte Pietra back into the historic city centre. There we found a cosy restaurant called Alcova del Frate where we were warmly welcomed by the charming owner, Massimo Perna. I knew that horse meat was an Italian speciality but this was the first time that I had come across donkey on a menu. Bigoli con Asino is local pasta with donkey meat. I was very apprehensive about trying it but Rob convinced me to give it a bash. Massimo claimed that I would find it to be the most tender meat I have ever eaten and likened the texture to butter. The meal was prepared by Chef Andrea who is a huge fan of Cape Town and the Clifton beauties!. I was fascinated by the thickness of the fresh Bigoli and the fact that it boiled with no oil. The donkey meat was prepared in almost a bolognese fashion with onions, carrots, celery and tomato. While Chef Andrea was finishing the Bigoli with Asino, Massimo introduced us to some of the areas better known wines, including Soave, Valpolicella, and Amarone – known as the ‘King of Veronese Wines’. The extremely high alcohol content of this wine (15 – 16 percent!) helped thaw the last remaining bits of ice from our extremities.
Yudhika’s Bottom Line?