Tuscan cuisine is deeply-rooted in the old farming tradition of this extraordinary land. This is the reason why many of its typical dishes are made up of poor, simple ingredients, as it was all the peasants could afford. Bread is the base of numerous dishes, and the Tuscan one is known for being sciocco – saltless – so that it can be better paired with a cuisine which, on the other hand, is rich in salt and strong flavours.
Here is a list of the Certaldo’s local dishes, from the most traditional to the most groundbreaking:
Although this bread soup is known to have French origins, it is actually a local dish of peasant cuisine, or cucina povera. The records for Certaldo’s onion – today a DOP product – date far back in history. Its existence is estimated to be prior to the first Etruscan settlement in this area.
This is another hearty bread soup, stewed with seasonal fresh vegetables. It is then stir-fried with extra virgin olive oil to enhance its aromas and particular earthly flavour. Its name means actually ‘boiled twice‘, and partly explains the cooking method of this peculiar and belly-filling dish.
The Tuscan crostini – crouton – is another milestone of this cuisine to be usually paired with chicken liver sauce to be spread generously on the bread slice. Together with local cold cuts, it forms the worldwide known ‘Tuscan starter ‘ or antipasto toscano.
Simple summer dish made up of soaked bread – also stale bread can be used, following the no-waste peasant tradition – which is then wrung out into chunks and mixed with different vegetables according to one’s taste. Serve with extra virgin olive oil and some basil leaves. A no – fuss dish hugely popular during Tuscan summer.
Be warned, the name of this dish is misleading. This is no fish, but a particular way of cooking pork and then preserving it it in sunflower oil which has been known since the Middle Age. The cooking and storing technique makes the appearance of this meat similar in every aspect to the can tuna we all know, but the flavour is something completely different.