Grape Gourmet – Cucina Dello Zio

Cibo, vino e liquori di cucina in tutto il mondo.

Cucuzza – Stew

from the #garden #Cucuzza #Stew #Fresh #Sicilian #basil #homemade #Food #CucinaDelloZio -

Cucuzza – Stew
Ghiotta di Cucuzza
by James Belardo

As I was  growing up in Brooklyn, NYC, many of our neighbors grew a summer squash originally from Sicily, the cucuzza. The cucuzza (cucuzza longa) can grow up-to 6-feet long, it’s pretty incredible. I never guessed that such a plant could have such a profound impact on me. Somehow, this ubiquitous plant (at least in our neighborhood) would come to symbolize a good part of my childhood.

I’m not a great gardener but do have some land to give ‘er ago, I try, year after year and can only nurture one or two ‘fruit.’ Every year we ‘attempt’ to grow cucuzza, some years are better than others but this year we had a reasonable crop. Having an abundance of this vegetable created a challenge, we had to come up with different ways to prepare it.

from the #garden #Cucuzza #Stew #Fresh #Sicilian #basil #homemade #Food #CucinaDelloZio -

Ingredients
3-4 lbs. cucuzza squash, peeled, de-seeded and cut
2-3 cloves garlic, diced
1/2 cup lentils
1 small red onions, cut
2-3 carrots, sliced
3-4 stalks celery
4 small potatoes, cut into cubes
28 oz can San Marzano tomatoes, hand crushed
1 cup dry white wine (Pinot Grigio)
2+ cups water
4-6 tbsp olive oil
fresh basil
2-3 bay leaves
1/2 lemon, juice
salt and  pepper – to taste
grated Pecorino Romano cheese
Peperoncino Fiocchi (hot pepper flakes) – optional

Directions
1. In a large dutch oven, sauté the onions, garlic and (optional) Peperoncino Fiocchi (hot pepper flakes).
from the #garden #Cucuzza #Stew #Fresh #Sicilian #basil #homemade #Food #CucinaDelloZio -

2. When onions begin to turn translucent, add a cup of wine, a cup of water and the bay leaves.
from the #garden #Cucuzza #Stew #Fresh #Sicilian #basil #homemade #Food #CucinaDelloZio -  from the #garden #Cucuzza #Stew #Fresh #Sicilian #basil #homemade #Food #CucinaDelloZio - from the #garden #Cucuzza #Stew #Fresh #Sicilian #basil #homemade #Food #CucinaDelloZio -

3. While the stew is cooking. par-boil the potatoes (salt the water).
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4. Once the liquid begins to boil, add the lentils.
from the #garden #Cucuzza #Stew #Fresh #Sicilian #basil #homemade #Food #CucinaDelloZio -

5. After about 5-10 minutes, as the soup returns to a boil, add the chopped carrots and celery.
from the #garden #Cucuzza #Stew #Fresh #Sicilian #basil #homemade #Food #CucinaDelloZio -

6. Once the soup returns to a boil, add the hand crushed tomatoes and a cup of the potato water.
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7. As  the stew simmers add the cucuzza and let cook.
from the #garden #Cucuzza #Stew #Fresh #Sicilian #basil #homemade #Food #CucinaDelloZio - from the #garden #Cucuzza #Stew #Fresh #Sicilian #basil #homemade #Food #CucinaDelloZio -

8. After about 10-20 minutes, taste and add salt and pepper.
from the #garden #Cucuzza #Stew #Fresh #Sicilian #basil #homemade #Food #CucinaDelloZio -

9. Once the seasoning of stew is close to what you like,  add the par-boiled potatoes along with another cup of the potato water.
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10. Add fresh (or frozen) basil and lemon juice, let cook for at least 10 minutes. Taste periodically and add salt and pepper if needed.
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Serve with grated pecorino Romano and flat leaf parsley on top
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Enjoy
The Grape Gourmet
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Written by Zio James

June 18, 2019 at 9:39 AM

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