Turle: sheperds’ potato and cheese dumplings

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Turle are a typical first course of the so called “Cucina Bianca” literally White Cuisine. It is the traditional cuisine of the villages that rise on Monte Saccarello, in the Ligurian Maritime Alps close to the France border. This culinary tradition was born among the small mountain communities dedicated to sheep farming that inhabited the top of the mountain during the periods of transhumance of the flocks.

The name (attributed to this gastronomic tradition only in the 60s) derives from the fact that, due to necessity and seasonality, the foods that characterize it have all a very light color: garlic, leeks, onions, cabbage, turnips and potatoes, beans and then chickens and eggs and, of course, flour, milk and dairy products.

The only color note are herbs, aromatic and / or spontaneous, which never fail in the Cucina Bianca.

Turle are a very easy dish to prepare, a stuffed pasta you can engage with for your first time. It’s a forgiving recipe and the possibilities to fail are very few. The filling is simple, based on potatoes, cheese, parmesan and mint.

The cheese traditionally used is Toma. Toma is a famous kind of Italian cheese mainly produced in the regions of the Northern of Italy. Literally it mean “cheese made by the farmer himself” . It is a soft or semi-hard cheese, matured for a couple of months .

The “half moon” shape a child’s play! Making them is a relaxing activity as you will focus all your attention in the task of sealing properly the filling without making a mess!

Btw, the filling leftovers (if you succeed in not devouring them raw) are perfect for delicious fried or baked potato croquettes.

Enjoy and don’t forget to share your comments, impressions and results!

With love.

turle: Ligurian potato and cheese  dumplings
turle: Italian Riviera potato and cheese dumplings

turle: Italian Riviera potato and cheese dumplings
Turle: recipe of the traditional Liguria potato and cheese dumplings


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Ciao! I’m Enrica

a home cook, food researcher and experience curator born and bred in Liguria.
I study, tell, cook, share and teach Ligurian cuisine and the culture surrounding it.
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