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Saturday, February 2, 2013

Where vegetarianism is an exotic illness

13 January 2013 

Where vegetarianism is an exotic illness

By Dany Mitzman Bologna

Castelnuovo Rangone is a proud
pork capital 

Emilia Romagna is a region in northern Italy famous for its fine charcuterie, which can make avoiding meat dishes there particularly challenging.

One of the nicknames of my adoptive town is "Bologna la grassa", or "Bologna the fat".

The local diet is about as Mediterranean as chicken tikka masala. There is mortadella, a sausage known elsewhere as Bologna, the forefather of American baloney.

Then there is Bologna's world famous ragu, the pasta sauce known in the UK as bolognese. This is a city where meat rules supreme.

But it is not fair to single out Bologna when really the entire inland part of Emilia Romagna, a region of northern Italy, could be dubbed Emilia la grassa.

An hour away is Parma, the home of parma ham. Even Modena, just 20 minutes from me, has its own porky specialities, traditionally eaten at this time of year.

This is probably the only region where you will find a central piazza boasting a bronze statue of a porker.  (...)

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