Frisa, or frisella, is the bread of Salento origin that has become famous throughout the Boot thanks to its simplicity and its versatility. Here is the story of this baked product that can be very useful in the management of aperitifs at the bar.
When the days get longer and warmer, the desire to spend a few more hours outside, perhaps at the bar, for an aperitif with friends or colleagues, after work, is reborn.
And so your restaurant should not miss the opportunity to take advantage of the best products of the land and the wonderful Mediterranean area to propose something healthy, fresh, pleasant and suitable for an aperitif that is not “too much”, so as to skip dinner.
You just have to choose the right ingredients and combine them with a traditional finger-food and 100% Mediterranean.
Frisa: history, origins and tradition
Frisa – or frisella – is a baked product typical of the Salento tradition. It is a dry bread taral already used, it seems, in Roman times as a food that can be preserved for a long time, thanks to its double baking. The testimonies can already be found in Pliny’s book “Naturalis Historia”, which describes it as a bread to be soaked in water and olive oil, or water and honey, or water and wine, or even water and vinegar.
At that time, Frisella was certainly made with spelt, barley or millet flour, since corn would arrive many centuries later from the Americas, but it already existed as a way to preserve an indispensable product in the daily Mediterranean diet.
Another testimony that seems to attribute the origin of Frisa to ancient times is the similarity with the descriptions of the so-called “nautical bread”, a squat flat and round that could be stored and stopped on a stack thanks to a central hole. This is how ancient books describe it.
The evolution of frisella, nowadays, is all in the flours used, but it remains the basic characteristic: that of having to soften it in water (the spazzatura that the women of Salento recommend to do for at least 20 seconds in immersion) before seasoning it with fresh products such as tomatoes, vegetables, legumes, but also meat or fish.
Frisella for a chic aperitif: make every customer create the right one
The easiest and most traditional way to consume frisella is to dress it – after having wet it – with extra virgin olive oil, salt and cherry tomatoes (perini, piccadilly or pachino).
However, the very essence of frisa means that everyone can create their favorite with the ingredients they prefer: pickled or pickled vegetables, capers, tuna, cooked or raw vegetables (from turnips to lettuce) or even legumes that enrich with protein making this dish balanced and nutritious.
For your aperitif you can let each customer create the right one from a list of available ingredients. You can leave the choice of the right aperitif to your customers’ imagination and personal taste. It is an excellent way to enhance the aperitif and make it unique.
But you can also give some suggestions.
Frisa chickpeas, tomato and ricotta cheese: our favorite
A simple recipe that you can enjoy to customize as you like. The important thing is the basic quality of the products that give the taste and substance to your dish.
You can fry the chickpeas already boiled with garlic, olive oil and let them cool and flavor with some herbs at the end of cooking. Choose small, juicy tomatoes and cut them into 4 parts to obtain slices. Season them in a separate bowl with olive oil, salt and oregano (to follow the traditional flavors of Puglia). When the chickpeas are completely cooled, add them to the tomatoes and spread them over the previously sponted and seasoned frisa. To complete the process, you can distribute sheep’s ricotta cheese flakes and fresh basil leaves. A chiccheria!
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