THE DISH OF THE POOR MATERANA TRADITION
It is well known that in ancient times the peasants did not throw anything away. We ate what the land gave away, and what was left over was kept or reused. A lot of time was spent in the fields and the work was very heavy. For this it was necessary to eat protein and healthy food. But the meat was expensive, the pasta had to be made at home, and the cured meats we are used to today were a luxury. Even the bread, after a few days, became hard and they used it mainly in two ways: either dipped in milk in the morning, or it was wet and softened with vegetables, or the Cialledda.
We have two versions of the Cialledda: warm and winter, made with egg, bay leaf, garlic, olives and extra virgin olive oil. But now summer is upon us and the ideal is a cold wafer, with few but simple and tasty ingredients.
The basic ingredients for the Matera summer wafer are:
Stale bread (Matera bread is ideal because it has a soft interior and crunchy bark), Carosello cucumbers, red onion, cherry tomatoes, black olives, oregano and obviously plenty of extra virgin olive oil.
The preparation is very simple: Put the bread cut into pieces in a bowl with water and let it soften for a few minutes. Once ready, drain it and add the tomatoes and the previously cleaned and cut vegetables, salt, olives, oregano and lots of olive oil.
The main ingredient of the Cialledda is the Carosello, because being rich in water it is very refreshing. Furthermore, if we follow ancient traditions, we can serve it in ice water to make everything fresher.
You can also add vegetables that you like best, such as diced peppers and a few mint or basil leaves. It will make everything more delicious.
There is nothing left to do but accompany this dish with a good glass of white wine, fresh from the refrigerator.
Enjoy your meal!