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For more than five centuries, rice has been the King Crop of the Novara area, defining its landscape and characterizing its agricultural economy. Many varieties of rice are grown here, from the most famous Arborio, Roma and Sant’Eusebio, to the lesser known Vialone Nano, Range and Black Venus rice.
Novara possesses a wealth of rice-based dishes, but the classic recipe must be Paniscia, a hearty dish of rice cooked with lard, onions and the local salame d’la Duja in a broth whose ingredients vary with the season but can include beans, carrots, celery, leeks, cabbage and tomatoes.
Paniscia used to be a festive dish, cooked only on special occasions, but today you can try it in restaurants all over the area, along with a glass of excellent Piedmont wine.