Every year the town of Castel d’Ario – Mantua province, Lombardy region – following the tradition and in pleasure to guests and locals organizes the Rice festival “Riso alla Pilota”.
The name of the rice “Riso alla Pilota” comes from the Italian word “pila” – a mill, where rice was being cleaned of the husks. The official modern name of this rice is Vialone Nano: the rice of the province of Mantova.
The history of Riso alla Pilota began back in the days when rice was handled manually in mills. Workers of such mills were called “piloti” or “pilarini” in the local dialect. The workers “piloti” didn’t have much time to cook lunch, so they came up with special technology for boiling rice, which does not require control over cooking of the dish. In such way the recipe of one of the types of Italian risotto – Risotto alla Pilota – was invented.
Initially, just fried onions were added into rice for lunch in a mill, but gradually the recipe of the dish was changed, and now a mandatory ingredient of Risotto Alla Pilota is the sauce of minced pork – Pistume.
The Rice festival Riso alla Pilota, apart the famous risotto, also presents other culinary specialties cooked by the traditional recipes of the province of Mantua.
The tasting of dishes will be accompanied by a fair of local delicacies and musical performances.