Five Classic Italian Foods You Should Eat in Naples

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One of the great joys of traveling to Italy is the food. Italians have perfected the art of using simple, fresh, quality ingredients to create truly memorable dishes – and nowhere is that more true than in Naples. Today we’re joined by our ToursByLocals guide Ludovica, a native to Naples, and a lover of Neopolitan cuisine. She’s sharing with us five foods you absolutely must try on your trip to this southern Italian city.

Five Classic Italian Foods To Eat in Naples

Naples is a unique city, known as the “soul of Italy”. With its people, its ambience and atmosphere chaotic and full of spirit, there is always something new to discover and experience in terms of art and food.

Here are five of my favourite dishes that you simply cannot miss when visiting Naples.

1. Neapolitan Aperitivo

Neapolitan Aperitivo

Before starting your lunch (in Naples people eat quite late, usually not starting before 1:30 pm) you cannot miss a tasty Aperitivo “on the road”: buy and try the typical Neapolitan Tarallo. It is a savoury biscuit, made with almonds, pepper and lard... just a little something to whet your appetite! Even better if served with a good glass of red wine.

2. Neapolitan Ragù

Neapolitan Ragù

If you like to experience a typical Sunday lunch, the Neapolitan Ragù is a must. It is an exquisite meat sauce made with beef or pork, simmered for six hours in a big pottery pot. The sauce is usually mixed with local home made pasta (fusilli, ziti or paccheri). Do not forget to wipe your plate by doing a “scarpetta” with a slice of bread. Mmm…

3. Authenthic Neapolitan Pizza

Neapolitan Pizza

Pizza was officially born in Naples in 1889. Choosing which pizza to eat is really hard, but do not worry, as you simply cannot go wrong! Neapolitan style pizza is made in a brick oven; it is chewy with a thick crust, really tasty and even better if eaten by hand. Marinara is the simplest option, topped with tomato sauce, oregano and garlic; Margherita has tomato sauce, basil and fiordilatte (local mozzarella made with cow milk) and it was created for Queen Margherita of Savoy. Making pizza is an art here, and it has even become listed as part of UNESCO Heritage in 2017.

4. The Neapolitan Sfogliatelle

Neapolitan Sfogliatelle

Sfogliatella is one of the most famous Italian sweet pastries. You can eat it for breakfast or dessert. It is filled with a ricotta cream, semolina, cinnamon and lemon zest or orange candied bits. It can be made in two typologies: the “riccia” is curly and crunchy made with puff pastry; the “frolla” is softy and made by shortcrust pastry. I personally prefer the Sfogliatella Frolla, but the Riccia is also very nice!

5. Neapolitan Caffè

Neapolitan Caffè

In Naples if you order a Caffè you always receive an Espresso. It is short, strong, creamy... perfect to keep you awake! It is usually served in a warm small coffee cup together with some fresh water on the side. It is part of our culture, a proper obsession; there are coffee shops in every corner of the city. In Naples there is the “Caffè sospeso” tradition, consisting of paying in advance for an extra coffee that can be offered to people who cannot afford it. At home, the coffee is mainly made by Moka coffee machine or the Neapolitan version of Moka named “Cuccuma”.

I have given you some suggestions, now it is your turn to come to experience Naples. I am ready to share with you some of the hidden sides of my city!

Any travellers headed to Naples would be smart to book a Neopolitan food tour with Ludovica! You can find one right here: Ludovica’s Food Tour of Naples. Any questions? Or maybe you want to explore the city’s art, history or surrounding sites? Send Ludovica a message, and she’ll design the perfect day in Naples for you.
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