Tuesday, 8 April 2014

The Gelato and Grattachecca

My A-Z Challenge series is about Italy, it's lifestyle, the country and other miscellaneous things in regard to it.

Who doesn't love a gelato? So much nicer than the usual icecream we buy here in the UK. There are hundreds of flavours. Some of the gelaterias make their own speciality flavours, some are pretty unusual or perhaps crazy such as  Pear and Rhubarb, Ginger and Cinnamon, White Chocolate and Basil and also Ricotta Almond and Fig. I haven't tried any of those but will have a look out for them and have a taste. More usual flavours are Cioccolato, Nocciola, Mela and fragola (chocolate, nut, apple and strawberry).

You can buy it in a tub or on a cone and have two or three flavours, no less as that would be odd. With or without  panna which is the whipped cream piled on top. My absolute favourite gelato of 3 flavours is Pistachio, Crema and Caffe eaten from a cone, fairly quickly before it melts. I must have Panna as to me it's not a gelato otherwise.

A grattachecca on the other hand is not ice cream but flavoured ice. The vendour who usually works from a stall scrapes ices from a large block of ice, gratachecca actually means 'to scrape'. It's put into a tall glass and again, two or three flavours added these are syrups from bottles which you tell the vendor to add. You drink this through a straw. I tend to go for menta and orzo (mint and barley). This is really more of a specialty of the Lazio region not usually seen elsewhere. The bottles of syrup can be bought form shops so we always get one or two to bring home to make out own while not in Italy.

What's your favourite flavour ice cream? Have you tried a grattachecca?


Kim Van Sickler said...

I love gelato, but in the nearly three years I lived in Naples, Italy and traveled all over that country, I never tried grattachecca. Probably would taste great on a searing hot day, but otherwise, that gelato sings to me. And I LOVE mixing flavors.

Liz Blocker said...

Ok, now I'mm really, really hungry, and craving gelato. YUM, those pictures...

Melanie Stanford said...

I haven't had gelato in forever. It isn't as popular here in Canada but when I used to live in Ottawa I'd get it everytime I went downtown.
I haven't tried grattachecca before but it looks yum.

DayDreamer said...

Oooh Kim, hope you had a lovely time travelling round. Grattachecces are mainly regional to the are of Lazio, you'll see stalls or a man pushing a trolly selling it there and local towns around, though I haven't seen it in every part of Lazio I've been.

Sorry Liz. Writing this post made me feel the same.

Melanie, grattachecca is good on a very hot day to cool you down.

Sean @ His And Her Hobbies said...

Thanks for stopping by our blog earlier. Gelato is not huge here in Virginia but it seemed to be everywhere when we were in Australia. We have a similar product to Grattachecca here in the US but its already infused with the syrup and is called Italian Ice.

Sean at His and Her Hobbies

thelmaz said...

Stopping by from the A to Z challenge. I looove ice cream, sorbet, gelato. That's my comfort food. Hope you'll visit back. This year I'm doing quirky quotes. www.widowsphere.blogspot.com

Anonymous said...

Not so much gelato here in Mid-Missouri except in the freezer section at Walmart. :( But what we have is pretty tasty! *another a to z blogger

DayDreamer said...

Sean, yes, Italian Ice does sound very similar.

Thelmaz, Mmm, yes it is comfort food.

Slfinnell, ice cream is yummy wherever it's from.