Authentic Italian vegetarian dishes are often hard to come by; especially on an island that is roughly 7,600 km away from the European country. We use traditional family recipes, innovative cooking techniques and freshly sourced ingredients to prepare our vegetarian dishes. Here are 5 delicious Italian dishes you must try in Sri Lanka – head over to AQUA Forte in Galle Fort for an exquisite dining experience.
An authentic Italian meal always starts with a good antipasti and the Caprese di AQUA Forte is the perfect start for your dining experience. The core ingredients include a succulent serving of mozzarella, tomatoes and basil, and drizzled olive oil. However, the Caprese di AQUA Forte takes on a twist, with creamy mozzarella mousse, tomato jelly and aromatic basil, which is then seasoned with virgin olive oil.
Pair your Caprese with a wine like Alois Lageder Sauvignon Blanc, a medium bodied dry white wine with subtle notes of ripe subtropical fruit, gooseberry and elderflowers. This very fresh wine will effortlessly stand up to the acidity of the tomatoes while complement the mild cream and slight tang flavours of the mozzarella and the fragrance of the fresh basil.
At AQUA Forte, the Carpaccio di Zucchine is traditionally prepared using zucchini carpaccio with truffle oil, pistachio crumbles and then topped off with ricotta cheese mousse. Head Chef Roberto recommends having this antipasti to refresh yourself from the island heat, especially after a day exploring Galle Fort.
Accompany your starter with a glass of Villa Antinori Bianco Toscana IGT, a refreshingly white wine from the famous Toscana region in Italy. The savory minerality of this delicate wine will be a perfect pairing for the rich and creamy ricotta. The notes of bananas, pineapple, white flowers, and candied fruit will complement the interesting chew of the raw, chopped pistachio and it will all develop into a complex fat for this fresh starter.
Traditionally a Sicilian dish, this fresh handmade ravioli pasta is stuffed with eggplants, ricotta and pecorino cheese, basil, and fresh cherry tomato sauce. Bursting with rich mediterrenean flavours to transport you to sunny Sicily, the Ravioli alla Norma is a popular vegetarian pasta dish at AQUA Forte. Our ravioli is of course handmade and the pecorino and ricotta cheese are imported right from Italy to ensure you have a truly authentic Italian dining experience.
Pair this dish with an exquisite wine like Baglio del Sole Nero d’Avola, a rare, dark ruby, red wine that complements the robust flavours of the cheese and tomato. It is rich and bright, with aromas of amarena cherries, and plums, which will be a great balance for the natural bitterness of eggplant.
Do you want to know more about authentic Italian cuisine, best wine pairings and secret offers at AQUA Forte? Subscribe to our weekly newsletter and stay up to-date!
Polenta is a popular dish, traditionally served with parmesan, mushrooms, and red cabbage. Head Chef Roberto thought of a special addition using Taleggio cheese, imported from Italy. This vibrant dish, combining the yellow of the polenta, brown of the mushrooms, purple of the cabbage and white of the cheese, is a pleasure for the eyes!
The Polenta di Montagna is best accompanied with a glass of Merlot or Pinot Noir. We recommend our Bottega Merlot IGT Trevenezie from the same region of the polenta. This is an intense and vigorous, full bodied Merlot that will enhance the unmistakable, mouthwatering, sweet-corn flavor of the polenta without affecting its soft, creamy texture one bit.
From the north to the south, the Parmigiana di Melanzane is another traditional Italian vegetarian dish attributed to the region of Sicily. The dish is made of a delicious serving of pan-fried eggplants that is then baked with a layer of homemade tomato sauce and cheese. We prepare this using burrata and mozzarella cheese along with basil leaves to enhance the fresh flavours and delicate textures of the ingredients
Pair the Parmigiana di Melanzane with a glass of Sasseo Primitivo del Salento. This red wine is rich and spicy, with ripe dark plum and dark chocolate flavours, and it will make a perfect match to this savory dish.