In Marche has not a unique typical dish but every regional area as its own food characteristics. The flavours can be divided in the rustic taste of hinterland and the fresh sea dishes. Hills and mountain delicacies are mostly meat dishes like roast suckling-pig and marinated lamb, as well as in dishes prepared with truffles – particularly those from Acqualagna and Sant’Agata Feltria – and mushrooms. The most common kind of pasta are tagliatelle, strozzapreti (“priest stranglers”) and the traditional vincisgrassi, forerunner of lasagne throughout the Italian peninsula.
Along the coast, obviously, fish in protagonist in cuisine, like in the famous brodetto, a fish soup containing more than 14 fish species; it is often enhanced with tomatoes (Pesaro and Ancona) or saffron (Ascoli).
Ascoli’s most famous dish is the fritto misto all’ ascolana (Ascoli’s mixed fried), a fried medley of stuffed olives, cream, zucchini, artichokes and lamb chops.
Also some delicious desserts deserve to be mentioned: ciambellotto con i funghetti all’anice (a ring-shaped cake with aniseed), cicerchiata (deep-fried dough with honey), and fried ravioli stuffed with chestnuts, cream and ricotta cheese.
Other must-tries are the pecorino sheep’s cheese from Talamello, wrapped in walnut leaves and ripened in tuff caves (formed by limestone and calcium); ham, dried cured loin of pork; and brawn salame.
Wines of Ascoli Piceno are renowned too: the white Falerio dei Colli Ascolani, the red Rosso Piceno and Rosso Piceno Superiore and, finally sweet wine stored in wooden casks, and with a Mediterranean hint of the aniseed flavoured liqueurs, Anisette and Mistrà.