Tag Archives: Argentina

Some South American Italian in the Triangle at Piola

When Italians settled in the United States about 100 years ago, some also settled in South America, especially Argentina. However, a critical difference is that the majority of Italian immigrants to the United States were from Southern Italy and the majority to South America were from Northern Italy. So the Italian food in both areas reflects that. I write about Italian food in South America and around the globe in my new book, Authentic Italian: The Real Story of Italy’s Food and Its People, available at Amazon.com.

Authentic Italian

One of the things I write about in the book is catupiry cheese, a soft cheese that tastes like a cross between ricotta and velvety burrata. Catupiry cheese was created in 1911 by a Brazilian Italian named Mario Silvestrini. For the most part, it is used in the same way we use cream cheese. However, it is different from cream cheese. It is also used on pizza and you can try it in the Triangle at Piola in North Hills in Raleigh. Piola is an Italian pizza chain from Treviso (near Venice in Northeastern Italy) with locations in Italy, South America and Raleigh.

Pizza from Piola with catupiry cheese

Another interesting South American Italian tradition that I mention in my book is eating ñoqui/ñoquis, or gnocchi, on the 29th of the month. Piola highlights this tradition. While Southern Italians eat gnocchi as well, it is associated more with Northern Italian cuisine, and that is probably why it is more popular in South American countries with Italian populations, like Argentina and Uruguay.

Gnocchi Legnano from Piola

–Dina Di Maio


Cool Food Blog

Seashells & Sunflowers is a very cool food blog of Argentine recipes written by an American living in Argentina.  Since Pope Francis is Argentinian, I’ve wanted to know more about Argentina, as I’m sure a lot of people have.  And that includes the food.  Last year, I learned about empanadas, and a few years before that, alfajores, of which there are recipes on the site.  Any place with stuffed provolone cheese has to be good.  With 60% of the population of Argentina having some Italian ancestry, Argentine food reflects an Italian influence.  A recipe I’ve seen associated with Argentina is faina, a flatbread made from chickpea flour.  Italian influence can be seen in this Tarta Pascualina or Easter pie.  If you’re looking for more Easter recipes, try this rosca de Pascua, or Easter bread ring.