Polenta and ‘Renga’

This is a traditional dish of our local cuisine, typical of Parona, a hamlet on the north side of Verona, on the shores of the river Adige.

The story goes that in the past, when the customs had closed the boatmen who transported goods from Trentino down the river would stop for a rest in Parona.

During their break, they would stay in one of the various inns of the parish and in exchange for the hospitality, they would leave a couple of boxes of herrings for their hosts.

These were then prepared according to the following recipe, and savoured during lent, when the people had to abstain from eating meat. It is thanks to the “Comitato benefico festa della Renga”, a committee established in 1969, that this dish, traditionally prepared on Ash Wednesday, has once again gained the popularity it deserves.

Ingredients: herrings, garlic, parsley, Turri extra virgin olive oil.

Grill the herrings directly over the cinders of the fire, and once cooked, remove the skin and bones. If there is roe, it should be kept and added to the dish. Place a layer of herrings inside an earthenware terrine, add chopped garlic and parsley and when the herrings are cool, cover with Turri 100% Italian EVO oil. Leave for about a month and a half, topping up with more oil if necessary.

Alternatively, instead of grilling the herring, you can boil it for three minutes in milk or water.

* Courtesy of “Comitato benefico Festa della Renga”

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