Cooking italian food in Istanbul is quite possible, i guess.
Vegetables and fruit* are pretty the same as in Italy, and some basic principles are common – for sure.
[*About sebze ve meyve I’ll write a specific post later]
But, there are just few times you felt you’ve missed something small but somehow essential.
For ex. il pangrattat0, in english known as breadcrumbs.
It’s very useful to give a good thickness to whatever mixture,
at the same time a good roughness to (almost) every surface,
saying nothing of the golden cruncy effect.
[arancino Cuore di mozzarella, i miss you.]
Just think about the relationship between sand and concrete
(from the reinforced concrete to the pastina tiles): that’s pangrattato in cuisine.
The problem is that I’m not able to find pangrattato here.
Drama: Supermarketlerte yok, pazarte yok, ekmegilerde yok.
In these situations, the spirit of survival fights against the self-preservation instinct for a while.
till “…but why don’t you DIY (do it yourself) ?!”
This post is a kind of short tutorial to describe the magnificency of pangrattato.
Firstly, special thanks to Fronza, whose illustrations delight today’s post.
I guess they’re the best drawings ever in the story of breadcrumbs.
1. PANGRATTATO = EKOLOJIK!
Since time immemorial, all over the world you can not throw bread away. never.
If at the end of the dinner your bread is still on the table, take care of it.
Just put it in a paper bag, in a dry and clean place and forget about it for fews days.
After a while, try the hardness test: the hammer is the best choice you can do…
to verify if your bread is worthy!
2. PANGRATTATO = SABIR!
Now, the only things that you need are:
a grater and a lot of will to grate.
Take your time, find a comfortable seat, and grate. that’s all.
*purists (like fronza’s and my moms) prefer to sieve the powder according to different granulometry,
because, you know, details are important in cuisine.
But i’d advice to avoid for the moment this last operation and to thank God for this courtesy.
The best would be to keep it in a dry and clean place, (a plastic bag or a glass can).
2. PANGRATTATO = SERENDIPITY
Please, keep it in a pretty visible place:
breadcrumbs could be helpful in several situations and you should be ready to catch it.
Just potato? No, Gratin!
Pangrattato helps the right balance between amid and oil, collecting spices on potato surface.
The result is tasty, soft but cruncy.
And last but not least
definitely, my favourite:
“a volte una spolveratina su un piatto di spaghetti con le acciughe”
sometimes just a short sprinkling on pasta with anchovies, it’s enough.
Pan grattato on pasta is like a cherry on the top of the cake.
COROLLARY | Riddle me this:
What is the magic element that makes whatever junkfood so dishy?
[!arutanap etnaccorc al]