Portly Eats | Arrosticini, Montesilvano, Abruzzo


I’ve been in Abruzzo for a little while now and the other week I was taken out to try the local fayre, Arrosticini. They are a traditional dish from here in the Abruzzo region of Italy. Everywhere you look you can find restaurants with signs advertising Arrositicini as as well as the more familiar Pizza and Pasta.

Traditional Arrosticini is made from the meat of castrated mutton. When I asked what the meat was I was told by my Italian companions ‘Sheep’. It is cooked over coals on a small, what I would call BBQ but, what is known loaclly as a Canala. It is about 15cm wide and about a metre long and is specially designed for cooking Arrosticini.

The flavour produced from this method of cooking coupled with the fat content of the mutton is utterly amazing. The Arrosticini you can see above I ate mostly to myself. I love lamb and the stronger flavour you get from the mutton with the charring from the grill is perfect.

Before I came to Abruzzo I had never heard of Arrosticini, having to rely on Google Translate telling me it meant skewers. I honestly think its one of the best kept secrets of Italy. Its served with freshly baked bread that has been sliced and then drizzled with Olive Oil that is green and actually tastes of Olives!

I’m yet to attempt making them at home, it might have to be something for the summer and BBQ season, to try and get that authentic taste. If by chance you do see Arrosticini on a menu or are in Italy. Make sure you try these little skewers of delight!


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