The Apulia cuisine, inspired by the Mediterranean diet, features a lot of fresh and local herbs, vegetables, fruits, contains a moderate amount of pasta and bread, and includes a little fish and meat. These wholesome ingredients are all topped with extra virgin olive oil.
The Acquasala, a popular dish in Apulia, is an example of this cuisine. It is not only healthy, as it is prepared with fresh ingredients, it is also relatively easy to make. This dish can be enjoyed perfectly after a long day at the beach.
Remember: this recipe has no exact measurements, so you can add as little or as much of each ingredient as you wish.
This week we want to bring you in the Puglia region, and more precisely in Cisternino town, the heart of Itria Valley. We recently had the pleasure of spending a few hours together with Giorgio and Giuseppe, the owners of Il Cucco Cucina Enoteca, eating delectable food and sipping a glass (or more :-)) of “Nero di Troia” red wine gently suggested by Walkingwine.
This week the Walkingwine 3-wheeler stopped in “The white city” Ostuni – Puglia at Ristorante Porta Nova and paired a Zin – Fiano Salento white wine with a “Black Trofie Pasta with Broccoli Rabe and Cuttlefish” dish.
Porta Nova is set on a breathtaking view terrace inside a XV Century Aragonese donjon and it offers a lovely view on the olive trees valley and on the Ostuni shore.
“Passionate, territorial and feminine” is the definition Erika Ciaccia, the chef of this renowned and fine restaurant, gives her cuisine. She offers a cuisine with excellent and local ingredients with an international style.
The restaurant opening by Tonino Ciaccia is dated 1989, and since then Erika loves to spend time with her dad in the kitchen. Her passion grew over time and has been strengthened thanks to a master with Massimiliano Alajmo. the youngest chef to gain 3 Michelin stars. Beside that, Erika went to the finals of “Hell’s Kitchen”, in the Italian television. Since she was 18 years old, Erika is the chef of Porta Nova.
Today she has prepared for us a fish dish that perfectly blends different ingredients and flavours typical of Southern Italy. This dish is enhanced by the distinct personality and structure of Zin – Fiano, as recommended by Walkingwine.
These biscuits are a traditional goodness from Ceglie Messapica, a small town in Itria Valley (Upper Salento) – Puglia – Southern Italy. In recent years, its elegant downtown, its amazing countryside (filled with farmlands, olive groves, medieval castles, vineyards, almond trees and trulli) and its food, made with simple and tasty ingredients, have attracted people not only from all over Italy but also from all over the world.
Ceglie biscuits, Slow food Presidium, are made only with products from the territory: almonds, cherry or grape jam, rosolio (homemade liqueur), lemon. If you wish to have a taste of the original ones and you find yourself in Ceglie Massapica, go and visit one of these bakeries: “Forno Allegrini“, “da Gigliola” or “Caffé Pasticceria centrale“.
If you live, just like us, far from Apulia, bake them by yourself following our recipe and you will get an initial idea on how delicious they are!
When I was a child, in my house in Apulia, Sunday wasn’t a respectable Sunday without a succulent dish of pasta al ragù di brasciole. Despite the name the pasta sauce does not contain the brasciole (the meat roll-ups); these are served separately after the pasta (as a secondo piatto in Italian), always accompanied by some good wine, like the well known Salice Salentino or Negroamaro (which at the time I was of course not allowed to drink :))
Thanks to Fabio, a long time friend, for giving us advices about this brasciole dish.
Walkingwine: an unconventional catering, the wine where you want it.
Last summer we randomly came across the inventors of a quite unusual way to taste and enjoy wine: a street wine – shop. Graziana and Giorgio, two Apulian business owners, a few months ago started their activity with the idea of bringing top quality local wine into the streets of Puglia with an equipped 3-wheeler.
“We are at our best in lonely places: nature, country side, cliffs, view points… where there’s nothing, we come, we bring the party, we go. Leaving the “nothing” in its own place” is their motto. Check their website.
We kept contact, and they offered to present a guest post with a pairing between a wine produced with grapes from the Apulian vineyards and a dish suggested by a local chef, whose flavours are enhanced by the characteristics of the wine.
The first column presents a white wine, Fiano – Salento IGT from I buongiorno, a fine wine collection created by the refined sommelier Teodosio Buongiorno, and made from ones of the best Apulian vineyards according to the age and characteristics of the land.
Teresa Buongiorno, the owner with Teodosio, of the OsteriaGià sotto l’arco restaurant prepared a dish, “Steamed squilla mantis on chickpea cream” (the recipe below), which pairs with this wine the best.
Our friendMatteo has shared with us a recipe inspired by the torretta di melanzane, a dish created by the renowned Italian chef Alfonso Iaccarino. If you want to taste the original, you can go to his restaurant Don Alfonso di Sant’Agata dei Due Golfi in the Amalfi Coast.
The zeppole of Saint Joseph are the delicious pastries that in Southern Italy, especially in Puglia and in Campania, people make for Father’s day on March 19th. You can bake or fry them, below we will show you the two different procedures, just choose the one you prefer and try it!