The laboratory was in full swing with a new food to try and halloween to celebrate. A little while ago we discovered the existence of a food called tigella. Tigelle (plural form) is like an ancient Italian sandwich, from the northern region of Romagna. The bread used for the sandwich is called crescentine, and the meat of the sandwich is a combo if a strong cheese and cured meat.
Since, this is for fun, and we have no constraints to speak of, we have attempted to make a tigella as authentic as possible. We started by selecting an authentic hard dry salami to cure in our chamber. For this project we picked a finocchiona, both as a regional and textural fit. Fast forward through six weeks of curing and we are ready to take a crack at making these.
Now that we have our salami ready to slice, we start the crescentine, the ingredients are simple, just flour, lard, yeast, and water.
Time to mix it all together. I really had no idea what ratio to use here, so I started with about 4 cups of flour, and lopped off about twenty percent of my lard block. Then our little play gourmet added our the yeast solution and warm water until it started mixing well.
Our little play gourmet was very patient with the water, not adding too much, and then careful to pull the dough off the hook a few times for extra kneading. Once complete, we set aside to rise for an hour.
While rising, we take some salami out of the chamber and slice it thinly in prep for our final stage. The casual observer might not notice what our little play gourmet is up to in this photo. He noticed that as I sliced, the meat would pile up in only one place, so he took it upon himself to move the tray back and forth to evenly spread the salami out.
Now that we are done with that, the dough has risen, and we need to roll it out. But the bread making has really become the sole responsibility of one little boy. So he takes over and rolls the dough into nice even flat pieces.
At this point, we have to let it rise again. So we set it aside, but we are sure not to waste the time. Instead, our little play gourmet takes this opportunity to clean out the pumpkin for our Halloween carving.
The carving went pretty quick this year, the request was for Mickey Mouse, and here is what we came up with.
Back to the crescentine, the bread has risen a second time, and we now cut out our buns.
From here we pan fry the bread dough, pancake style.
We chose gorgonzola to accompany the finocchiona…
And voila! A tigella on crescentine.
With much anticipation, we took our first bite. And then proceeded to run around the entire house with our tigelle. It was wonderful, but…… Mrs. Play Gourmet was inspired to try another experiment.
Hypothesis: Adding a fried egg would be awesome. Since we had so many to experiment with, we went for it.
And man, it was no longer a tigella, instead it was an insanely decadent breakfast sandwich made with crescentine, gorgonzola, and finocchiona.
Observation: It was fantastic!!!
Conclusion: Great idea.
It was a neat project on top of a busy weekend, during halloween, but it was an uber-success!