Bagna càuda (Italian: [ˈbaɲɲa ˈkauda]; locally: [ˈbaɲa ˈkɑʊda]; from the Piedmontese "hot dip", alternatively written bagna caôda or bagnacauda, etymologically related to Italian root bagn-, meaning "wet") is a warm dip typical of Piedmont, Italy, but with numerous local variations. The dish, which is served and consumed in a manner similar to fondue, is made with garlic, anchovies, olive oil, butter, and in some parts of the region cream. In the past walnut or hazelnut oil would have been used. Sometimes, truffles are used in versions around Alba. The dish is eaten by dipping raw, boiled or roasted vegetables, especially cardoon, carrot, peppers, fennel, celery, cauliflower, artichokes, and onions. It is traditionally eaten during the autumn and winter months and must be served hot, as the name suggests. Originally, in Piedmont, the Bagna càuda was placed in a big pan (peila) in the center of the table for communal sharing. Now, it is usually served in individual pots (the fojòt, a type of fondue pot traditionally made of terra cotta).
Bagna cauda is also a popular winter dish in central Argentina, an area of predominantly Northern Italian descent.
In popular culture
The US television series Babylon 5 episode "A Distant Star" featured Michael Garibaldi's effort to smuggle the ingredients for the dish onto the space station in defiance of doctor's orders. A later episode, "A Late Delivery From Avalon", showed him once again having trouble acquiring the ingredients, this time due to a trade embargo and an obstructive mail carrier.
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