Pappa al pomodoro is a typical dish of Tuscan peasant cuisine, originally from the lands between Florence and Siena, when not even a piece of bread was wasted.
In fact, this traditional dish is made with stale Tuscan bread, tomatoes, oil and salt: few ingredients, but with a strong and genuine flavor that have made pappa al pomodoro a typical dish of Tuscan cuisine.
Let's see which are the best and most traditional places to reach by motorbike for a ride or a weekend dedicated to Italian food and wine traditions.
The pappa al pomodoro is so good, that a song from the 60s by Rita Pavone entitled "Viva la pappa al pomodoro" was also named after it and inspired by the legendary children's book by Vamba "Il Giornalino di Giamburrasca".
From Caino - Montemerano
In the medieval village of Montemerano, a true pearl of the Maremma Tuscany, in Da Caino Restaurant, the chef a two stars Michelin , Valeria Piccini, prepares tomato soup in the footsteps of his dear grandmother Ada. “In the summer he prepared it with fresh tomatoes, which give it a more intense flavor and a beautiful red color; in winter with hanging cherry tomatoes, which once were also in Maremma, but now unfortunately no one makes them anymore. And how good they were! Like all Tuscan soups, it was also used to recover stale bread, which absolutely could not be thrown away ".
Coco Lezzone - Florence
A you can eat the traditional tomato soup in the ancient trattoria Coco Lezzon, a few passivated da via De 'Tornabuoni. Here all the dishes are cooked slowly, just like the soups require, on the wood stove and have ancient and familiar flavors for the Tuscans. Perhaps this link with the flavors of tradition makes this trattoria in the historic center particularly appreciated by many personalities from the world of entertainment.
Collazzi Estate - Impruneta
Not far from Florence, in the small village of Impruneta, the famous Collazzi estate, also famous for the production of wines and for the majestic namesake villa, awaits you for a very refined tomato soup created by Angela Tucci. «Our spiced tomato soup is made up of a rectangle of grilled tomato soup; Tuscan bread and tomato are scented with curry, turmeric and cinnamon. Accompanied by a very fresh cow's milk cheese, it is complemented by slices of fermented milk tomato that gives the palate a boost, while the puffed rice is the crunchy component. To finish, a tomato water and a garnish of fresh herbs ».
Lino Restaurant - Pavia
If you are not lucky enough to live in Tuscany or to pass through it, a few kilometers from Milan, the chefs Chefs Federico Sgorbini e Andrew Ribaldone they serve the Pappa al pomodoro in one bite! From the experience of chef Sgorbini in Val d'Orcia, the idea of recreating the traditional Tuscan recipe was born in a small but delicious taste. Everything refers to the typicality: bread soaked in water seasoned with fresh garlic, onion, extra virgin olive oil and tomato, but with some variations. The bread is toasted several times and three tomatoes are used, fresh, concentrated and sauce, and everything is napped in tomato water to create a sort of jelly. The result is an ox heart-shaped tomato to eat in one bite.
Galileo Restaurant - Pisa
Located in the center of Pisa, the Galileo restaurant overlooks a limited traffic square. Away from the din of the car, let yourself be enveloped by the flavors of the typical dishes of Tuscan cuisine a low prices. Pappa al pomodoro stands out among their specialties, and obviously we suggest you enrich it with a drizzle of raw oil and a glass of full-bodied red.
The Artusi recipe, original recipe
Following the advice of the gastronomic writer Artusi to make tomato soup according to the Tuscan tradition, you must use Tuscan bread, therefore unsalted and stale, Tuscan tomatoes and vegetable broth made with celery, onion and carrot.
After this introduction on the origins and history of Pappa al Pomodoro, let's see how to prepare Pappa al Pomodoro according to the traditional Tuscan recipe.
Pappa al Pomodoro recipe
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 20 minutes
Total time: 40 minutes
Doses: 6 people
750 gr. of ripe Tuscan tomatoes
350 gr. of stale Tuscan bread
250 gr. of extra virgin olive oil
1 liter of vegetable stock
- Prepare the tomato sauce using the Tuscan tomatoes that are first peeled and then cut into pieces. Put the extra virgin olive oil and a clove of garlic in a pan and simmer for a maximum of 2 minutes, until the garlic is slightly golden. At this point add the tomatoes and cook everything for a few minutes, covering the pan with a lid. While cooking, add salt and pepper.
- While the sauce is cooking, cut the stale bread into small cubes and prepare the vegetable broth using onion, carrot and celery.
- As soon as the tomato sauce is ready, add the broth and bread; mix everything over low heat for about 5 minutes. At this point, let the baby food rest at room temperature for a few hours, so that the bread will better absorb the broth.
- Before serving the pappa al pomodoro, reheat it on the stove adding a little broth, oil and fresh basil leaves.