Italian inspired recipes for Halloween

Traditionally, Halloween is not celebrated in Italy with the same vigor that it is in America and the UK. However, it is becoming more popular, with parents taking their children trick or treating and themed biscuits, candy and pumpkin-inspired foods available in some stores, especially in North Italy. So, in celebration of Halloween, we’ve compiled some of our favorite Halloween-themed and pumpkin-inspired dishes that are vaguely Italian. What are your favorite Halloween dishes? Share them with us on Facebook!

Penne with pumpkin, bacon and traditional balsamic vinegar of Modena
This dish feels somewhat inspired by carbonara, but uses pumpkin puree to create a rich and satisfying sauce with hints of autumn. The pancetta bacon is sautéed with rosemary, garlic and parsley and so this dish is full of Italian flavors!

Risotto di zucca (pumpkin risotto)
Risotto is the ultimate comfort food and is especially popular in North Italy, where pumpkin is also widely available. For this tasty dish you could use any kind a squash – half is used to create a sauce for the risotto, while the other half is cut into small chunks and sautéed for a textured risotto that is hard to resist!

Pumpkin and ricotta pie
Ricotta cheese is popular in Italy, especially in desserts, and is a key ingredient in cannoli, which can be found in South Italy and Sicily. It is a creamy whey cheese and so is rich in protein. This sweet pie uses pureed pumpkin, ricotta and almond extract to create a decadent dessert that is a lovely for the Halloween weekend.

Bruschetta with roasted pumpkin and mozzarella
When we think of bruschetta, we normally envisage crusty bread brushed with garlic and decorated with chopped Italian tomatoes and extra-virgin olive oil. However, there’s no end to the creations you can come up with and for an autumnal twist, why not try topping your bruschetta with roasted pumpkin chunks, creamy mozzarella and torn fresh basil leaves? It makes the perfect light snack or starter.

Pumpkin gnocchi with butter sage sauce
We recently featured a recipe for pumpkin gnocchi on our blog and we love the recipe so much that we thought we’d feature it again here. Give the recipe a try and tag us in a picture of your creation on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram – we’d love to see how you get on!

Pumpkin panna cotta
Panna cotta, along with tiramisu, is a quintessential Italian dessert. It is a set dairy pudding and there are a multitude of variations out there, including chocolate versions and ones flavored with exotic spices. This creative take on the Italian panna cotta uses canned pumpkin to create the creamy base and crushed Italian biscuits to give a satisfying crunch to the top.

Pumpkin spiced latte
This is perhaps more the creation of a popular coffee house than it is an Italian drink but it features coffee and so we see no reason why it cannot be styled up in the Italian way! It is quick to whip up and the dairy milk can be replaced with dairy-free alternatives such as soy or a nut milk without compromising the pumpkin spice flavor. To get a good foam, we recommend using a milk frother.

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