Nestled in the alps in the northwestern corner of Italy is the tiny region of Valle d’Aosta. This area is surrounded by some of the highest mountains in Europe- Monte Bianco (Mont Blanc) and Cervino (the Matterhorn)- to name a few. Of course in the colder months it is a haven for winter sports. In the spring the valleys of this high country are filled with grazing cows whose rich milk is used for producing the delicious fontina cheese. As you can well imagine, the food from this area is hearty and full of flavor.
I have yet to visit this beautiful part of Italy but I was immediately drawn to a recipe from the region that I saw in Lidia Bastianich’s book Lidia Cooks From The Heart Of Italy. It’s the perfect one dish dinner for a cold winter evening-potatoes, savoy cabbage and beef layered together, cooked for almost three hours and topped with creamy fontina cheese. I love being able to assemble the main dish ahead of time, especially when entertaining. We’re hosting another Sunday evening dinner with friends and I thought this might be a good dish to serve, but I couldn’t wait that long to try it. I think a big salad and a warm loaf of crusty bread and dinner is served!