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Le Marche

Marche

Boasting one of Italy’s most pristine coastlines to the east and rolling hills full of gastronomic treats to the west, Marche is a region of Italy that just begs to be discovered.

Marche, Le Marche, Marches – whatever you call this central Italian region, it’s clear that the people that live there (referred to as marchigiani) love their food. With meat often making up the majority of what’s on offer at any big meal and rich, fertile soil that’s responsible for the incredible vegetables, grains and pulses grown in the region, the natural bounty of Marche’s larder is what makes visiting this area of Italy so exciting. That, combined with the long, winding coastline to the east which sees fishermen bringing in the daily catch (which is then often turned into simple, delicious soups), means there’s something for every appetite.

It’s strange, then, that Marche isn’t more of a tourist destination in Italy. Perhaps that’s because it borders popular regions like Tuscany, Emilia-Romagna and Rome, which are known the world over for their famous dishes. For the more intrepid foodie, however, Marche offers a path less travelled, with serious culinary treasures awaiting those who make the trip. The famous olives all’Ascolana – deep-fried olives stuffed with meats and cheeses – are worth the journey alone, as is vincisgrassi, the region’s traditional take on lasagne and bowls of Italy’s only EU-protected fresh egg pasta, Maccheroni di Campofilone.

Read on, take notes and plan your next gastronomic getaway. Marche might not get the attention of its more well-known neighbours, but that’s because the locals want to keep all those deep-fried olives and fresh fish soups for themselves.

Marche: the complete foodie guide

Get to know this wild, untamed region by reading our general guide to the food and drink that makes Marche a gastronome's paradise.

Brodetto: Marche's famous fish stew

Along Marche's Adriatic coastline, this simple fish soup is found everywhere – but recipes differ from town to town. Learn more about how the dish came to be, and try cooking it yourself at home.

Ciauscolo: a seriously spreadable salumi

There are many cured meats hailing from Marche, but the most beloved (and most interesting) has to be ciauscolo – a spreadable sausage flavoured with fennel. Get to know this wonderful regional ingredient.

Fritto misto!

More fried flavours

Pasta, pasta!

Pasta di Campofilone might be 600 years old, but it's still one of Italy's crowning glories. The rich, golden colour thanks to the egg yolks and the finest grains from Marche's countryside make this one of the region's must-try specialities.

Flavours of Marche

All our Marche recipes

Take a look at our full collection of Marche recipes for a true taste of the region's culinary credentials.

Marche's masterchef