Cilento Cianfotta, summery flavors from my loved Cilento coast

Cilento cianfotta

I am in Italy at the moment, precisely in the Cilento coast, an important tourist area in the South of Italy, in Campania near Salerno and Napoli, where I am used to spending my holidays. Today’s recipe, Cianfotta, is typical of this area. It is a traditional summer vegetable stew, very similar to the French ratatouille, and right now is the best time to make it, as it needs summery vegetables such as crougettes and aubergines. There are different ways to prepare this dish, as well as spellings for its name. In the Neapolitan version for example we don’t make a proper soup, but we cook the vegetables until they get a creamy consistency and we also use red peppers; I’ve been explained that in Cilento they use flower crougettes and sometimes French beans too, “all the vegetables they can harvest in summer”. Serve it as an antipasto or as a side dish and not necessary very hot, this is often served tepid or at room temperature.

Cilento Cianfotta

Cilento cianfotta

I am in Italy at the moment, precisely in the Cilento coast, an important tourist area in the South of Italy, in Campania near Salerno and Napoli, where I am used to spending my holidays. Today’s recipe, Cianfotta, is typical of this area. It is a traditional summer vegetable stew, very similar to the French ratatouille, and right now is the best time to make it, as it needs summery vegetables such as crougettes and aubergines. There are different ways to prepare this dish, as well as spellings for its name. In the Neapolitan version for example we don’t make a proper soup, but we cook the vegetables until they get a creamy consistency and we also use red peppers; I have been explained that in Cilento they use flower crougettes and sometimes French beans too, “all the vegetables they can harvest in summer”. Serve it as an antipasto or as a side dish and not necessary very hot, this is often served tepid or at room temperature.

Cilento Cianfotta

Cilento Cianfotta

  • Prep time:
  • Cook time:
  • Total time:
  • Yield: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Recipe type: soup

Ingredients:

  • 2 Aubergines
  • 2 Crougettes
  • 4 Potatoes
  • 4 Tomatoes
  • 5 Crougettes flowers
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • Half onion, thinly sliced
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 glasses of warm water
  • Salt
  • Fresh basil
  • Parmesan to taste

Directions:

  1. Clean and cut all the vegetables into not very small cubes.
  2. In a saucepan sauté over a medium-high flame the garlic and onion until golden brown; add all the vegetables, salt and cook them for a couple of minutes.
  3. Add the warm water and let cook until soft, about 20/25 minutes. Add more water if necessary.
  4. Correct salt just before serving. Serve the soup in soup bowls and garnish with basil. Add some Parmigiano-Reggiano on top, to taste.

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