Balsamic Vinegar is a gastronomic treasure that has its origins in the picturesque province of Modena, located in Northern Italy, and since its birth it has been appreciated all around this beautiful country. In recent decades, however, the passion for this extraordinary condiment with its sweet and sour taste and balsamic hints has spread far beyond regional and national borders: its influence in the food sector, in fact, has been such as to modify the gastronomic trends of many nations, conquering gourmet palates from different latitudes.
The spread beyond national borders has not only changed the eating habits of those who have tried it, but has also contributed to opening new perspectives in the gastronomic world with cultural contaminations brought to the table both in the dishes of starred restaurants and in the poorest cuisines. An example of such cosmopolitan uses can be found in the so-called “Balsamic Dipping” and “Caprese al Balsamico”, two preparations which can be defined as innovative, but also deriving from a tradition attributed more or less erroneously to Italian culture by those who live abroad.
Balsamic Dipping: a Multidimensional Taste Experience Reminiscent of the Italian Pinzimonio
What is called “Balsamic Dipping” is a habit that is gaining particular popularity among lovers of good food and Mediterranean flavors in countries outside Europe . Most of the balsamic dipping recipes on the web include in the preparation of this sauce Balsamic Vinegar of Modena, olive oil (not necessarily Italian or extra-virgin), one or more cloves of garlic, salt and pepper, which alternate with other ingredients sometimes of dubious choice such as mayonnaise and rosemary, basil and oregano or even parmesan and oregano!
What is certain is that combining the sweetness, acidity and aromatic complexity of Balsamic Vinegar of Modena with the right flavors gives the palate wonderful contrasts. But it is certainly nothing new for Italians: in fact the art of immersing or, better, “pinching” fresh vegetables in a delicate mixture of extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper and vinegar is a practice that dates back to the Renaissance era and is known by all as pinzimonio. However, it is fascinating how contemporary cuisine and culinary art have acquired roots from our rich past, sometimes in a completely casual or unconscious way.
But what do they dip overseas in balsamic dipping? The answer is: almost everything! From crunchy and classic bruschetta to fresh cheese, from grilled vegetables to freshly baked chicken. In fact, the beauty of food is experimenting, having fun in the kitchen and finding new flavor combinations that may be able to amaze even the most Modenese of Italians!
Balsamic Caprese, Nothing Less than a Reinvented Italian Icon
A classic of Italian cuisine? Caprese: with its main ingredients (tomatoes, mozzarella and basil) symbolizes the homeland by bringing the three most beautiful colors in the world to the table. This true culinary icon has undergone a small change to its composition which could renew our ideas towards this dish. In fact, we are talking about Balsamic Vinegar of Modena IGP, added in the form of small drops which give a touch of aromatic complexity capable of perfectly balancing the freshness of the tomatoes and the creaminess of the buffalo mozzarella from Campania. This reinterpretation has achieved exceptional success around the world, proving that Balsamic Vinegar of Modena has the power to elevate even the most iconic dishes of Italian cuisine to a level of extraordinary gastronomic excellence.