neapolitan cuisine: rural ingredients, pasta and seafood dishes

neapolitan & campanian cuisine

few regions of italy typify italian cuisine quite like naples & campania. naples has centuries of cultural and culinary history, predating even rome itself, and many of the most iconic Italian dishes originated in the kingdom of naples and larger campania. at tesori, we take pride in creating our fresh, modern take on classic italian cuisine, but we know the importance of our historical roots. many of our favorite dishes on our menu owe their inspiration to classic neapolitan or campania recipes, so for our next #tourofitaly, we’ll cover the culinary styling and history of the region.

neapolitan & campanian cuisine

few regions of italy typify italian cuisine quite like naples & campania. naples has centuries of cultural and culinary history, predating even rome itself, and many of the most iconic Italian dishes originated in the kingdom of naples and larger campania. at tesori, we take pride in creating our fresh, modern take on classic italian cuisine, but we know the importance of our historical roots. many of our favorite dishes on our menu owe their inspiration to classic neapolitan or campania recipes, so for our next #tourofitaly, we’ll cover the culinary styling and history of the region.

typical campanian & neapolitan dishes

antipasti

Image courtesy of giallozaffereno.it
Image courtesy of giallozaffereno.it

while in northern italy a meal might begin with an antipasti of cured meats, traditional land-based meats don’t appear as frequently in neapolitan food. instead, a neapolitan or campanian meal might start with insalata di mare, a seafood salad, fried cicenielli (tiny baby fishes), or perhaps an insalata with mozzarella di bufala and some fresh vegetables.

primi

entrees are where campanian meals truly shine. neapolitan entrees make good use of the plentiful seafood from Tyrrhenian Sea, featured in delicacies such as frittura di paranza (deep-fried) cod or goatfish, mussels steamed with black pepper and dressed with lemon juice, or the famous polpi alla luciana, a dish of octopus cooked with chili pepper and tomato. pizza is also a tremendously popular dish, and is perhaps best typified by pizza marinara, which simply uses olive oil, tomato sauce, and garlic, or pizza margherita, featuring tomato sauce, mozzarella, and basil.

image courtesy of cookdiary.net
image courtesy of cookdiary.net

pasta is another campanian favorite, and even the famous spaghetti originated in campania. this might be enjoyed as spaghetti alla putanesca, a spicy dish made with tomatoes, olives, anchovies, and capers, or the more aristocratic spaghetti bolognese, featuring an elaborate ragu-like sauce. the main course might also include a vegetable dish like parmigiana di melanzane (eggplant pie with tomato sauce) or peperoni ripieni, a dish of stuffed whole peppers.

desserts

Image courtsey of italianways.com
Image courtsey of italianways.com

as with many regions of Italy, neapolitan food features many cakes and desserts. some of the most popular are sfogliatella, a flaky, layered pastry that’s often stuffed with cream; deep-fried zeppola cake; or baba, a rich rum cake.

wine

finally, no italian meal is complete without a healthy pairing of wine – and campania features some of the best. popular whites include falanghina, fiano di avellino, and greco di tufo, made from an italian grape thought to be greek in origin. in reds, aglianico and solopaca feature prominently, as does the famous lacryma christi, made from grapes grown on the slopes of mighty vesuvius and produced in both red and white varietals.

book a reservation our downtown chicago restaurant

naples has a long, rich culinary history that showcases the fascinating interactions and meldings of culture that occurred over centuries, but truly, the best way to understand neapolitan and campanian cuisine is to taste it. stop by tesori trattoria and bar or book your reservation online and we’ll walk you through all the flavors and dishes of naples, campania, and greater italy. we’d also be happy to recommend a perfectly-paired wine or handcrafted cocktail from our bar to complete your dining experience. we look forward to serving you soon.

PROMOTIONS

COME CELEBRATE VALENTINE'S WEEK WITH US!

Feb 11 - Feb 18: key menu features include:

House Cured Salmon
Sunchoke & Persimmon Risotto
Chocolate-Cherry Bread Pudding

CHICAGO RESTAURANT WEEK

Jan 27 - Feb 9: We think our Restaurant Week lunch and dinner menus pair really well with unique experiences around our neighborhood.

view our restaurant week menu

SEE THE FULL MENU
Powered By:
Latest News and Events
  1. Jan 27 – Feb 9

    We are so excited to be a part of this year’s Chicago Restaurant Week. While there will be plenty of options for you to consider, we think our restaurant week lunch and dinner menus pair really well with unique experiences around our neighborhood.

    view our restaurant week menu here