Today I present a traditional Sicilian recipe. Humble, with very few ingredients: the “caciocavallo alla Argentiera”. The protagonist of this dish of Palermitan origins is cheese,: that has to be, precisely, a palermitan caciocavallo (cow's milk and hard pasta and yarn, square shape) or a ragusa cheese Dop (also this vaccine and square shape) but you can also use a provola of the Nebrodi Dop, with an average seasoning. It is one of the many poor dishes, fruit of the ingenuity of the Sicilians, that have as their main ingredient cheese as, For example,, in these other recipes: SICILIAN FRIED TUMA, PECORINO MEATBALLS and RICOTTA MEATBALLS WITH GRAVY.
Ingredients and tips for a perfect Silver Cheese
The Palermitan Caciocavallo (Traditional agri-food product, Pat) and the ragusano caciocavallo (or provola ragus Dop) are both cow's milk cheeses, hard-paste and yarn, with different seasonings. For this recipe it is better to use a medium-aged cheese, nor too fresh (would melt), nor too hard (the dish would be too salty). For a perfect silver cheese it is very important to cut the cheese into slices of one centimeter thick (maximum of 1,5 cm). The caciocavallo has the typical rectangular shape, easier to slice than provola. For this recipe, you can also use other cheeses: Caciocavallo Silano Dop, Caciocavallo del Molise, Caciocavallo Podolico of Campania.
The other ingredients of this recipe are extra virgin olive oil, a drop of vinegar with a pinch of sugar and oregano. You can use fresh or dry oregano, according to the season, but remember that it must be a real and fragrant oregano. The one to 'scuccicciuliare',, which means to shell out once when it's dry, to preserve all year round the wonderful and balsamic scent of this extraordinary aromatic herb. At home, in Sicily, churning out oregano for winter is one of the rites of late summer.
Remember that the silvercavallo caciocavallo is served very hot, with crisp golden crust and soft, melted inner. In my opinion, the perfect side dish of this recipe is a fresh tomato salad, with garlic and basil. Simplicity always pays off.
The origins of the silvercavallo caciocavallo
The history of the supposed origins of this recipe is known, but I'll summarize it briefly. His invention would be attributable to the wife of a disgraced Palermo silversmith: the couple lived in The Silver Road and the woman, not to make it clear that they were in financial difficulties, instead of the “styrted rabbit” (recipe you make with oregano and vinegar) prepared the cheese. Less expensive, equally good and with an extraordinary scent. None, through the streets of Palermo, could have imagined that the dish that smelled so much was just humble cheese and not the most expensive rabbit.
At this point I just have to advise you to take a look at all my SICILIAN RECIPES and wish you good day.
400 grams of medium-aged caciocavallo or ripe ragus provola
two tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
two cloves of garlic
oregano, to taste
30 milliliters of white wine vinegar
the tip of a teaspoon of sugar
Preparing the silver cheese is very simple. Slice the caciocavallo or provola ragla into regular slices about one centimeter thick (and no more than 1,5 cm).
Put in a large frying pan, low and wide, extra virgin olive oil and garlic cloves peeled and cut in half. When the garlic has taken color and the pan will be very hot, arrange the slices of cheese and cook over medium heat until a golden crust has formed. Turn the cheese quickly and cook until a golden and crispy crust has formed on the other side.
Mix white wine vinegar with sugar in a glass and blend the cheese with vinegar. Leave to blend and season with plenty of fresh or dry oregano. Serve the caciocavallo to the hot Argentiera. The side dish I suggest is a fresh tomato salad with garlic and basil. Is, Obviously, hearty homemade bread. Bon appétit!
Don't use too fresh cheeses such as scamorza or fresh provola, because they will melt without forming the crust. Don't even use over-seasoned cheeses because the result will be too salty. If you like spicy, you can sprinkle the silver caciocavallo with black pepper or chilli.