by Lina Malafronte
Its fruit in its… if we were compiling a crossword puzzle we would arrive at the answer without racking our brain because, you know, its fruit in its season: its flavors, its aromas, its nutritive values, its textures and nuances first enliven the fields, then the market stalls and on end our tables.
There are the white cauliflower, the brown chestnut, the purple grapes, the green broccoli, the red radicchio, the orange khakis to color the palette of the months that lead to the end of the year. It is just in orange the latest new pizza signed by Enzo Coccia, starring the great lady of autumn, pumpkin.
Have you ever noticed how many dishes can you made with pumpkin? Just googling a bit and you’ll be inundated with countless recipes, pasta, main courses, side dishes, soups and even desserts made of the pulpy vegetable because pumpkin is so versatile and ready to be combined with all the various ingredients in surprisingly tasty preparations.
The master pizzaiolo Enzo Coccia knows it and he arranged a very special tête-à-tête with walnuts, another symbol of this period. And with buffalo smoked mozzarella, goat cacioricotta and extra virgin olive oil he stuffed his November pizza pumpkin and walnuts.
Maybe today Pliny the Elder would smile: at that time, truthfully, he predicted the success of this formidable ally of our cuisines. Underestimated for a long time so as to evoke unflattering proverbs and combinations, the golden squash, food for the poor, cheap and easy to grow, generous with the farmers and their motto of “do not throw anything away”, has taken, in more modern times, its revenge.
Of different shapes, colors and names, already known to the Etruscans, the Egyptians, the Romans and the Arabs, although in different varieties as different types were brought from Colombo in the Old World, dove into fairy tales, literary texts, legends and folk traditions, in doctors’ hands for its therapeutic properties and in those of women for their beauty rituals. We use absolutely every part of it, container and content reveal its strong, full, magic nature.
As strong, full and magic is the fusion with the walnuts and the goat cacioricotta, a cheese, eaten fresh or grated, which, in Southern Italy, is made using an unusual technique for curdling the milk.
Of course, you should try it!