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Forgotten Roman Dishes: Five Checchino Recipes from 1887 in Rome


Forgotten Roman dishes. When we think of the Roman cuisine, inevitably the thought goes to the most beloved and well-known dishes. Remember, however, that Roman cuisine is not made only of carbonara, cacio e pepe or amatriciana. In fact, Roman cuisine, years ago, considered as protagonists dishes that were then lost over time. At the heart of the Neighborhood Testaccioopposite the former slaughterhouse, the family restaurant Mariani, Checchino since 1887 continue to six generations those traditional dishes that other Roman restaurants have made into oblivion. Precisely in this restaurant, considered monument for traditional Roman cuisine, in the 19th century the cuisine of fifth trimesterthat is, that extra part of the animal that weighs like a noble quarter, but for many it is considered waste.

The three are in charge of the restaurant today Mariani Brothers: francesco, helium And Marina. The dishes of the restaurant keep the original recipes of the ancestor, the great-grandmother Ferminia. In fact, these have been kept over time as they are considered “a inheritance that couldn’t be wasted“, tells us Francesco.

The location of the restaurant, a stone’s throw from the slaughterhouse, has caused the restaurant to specialize in fifth-quarter cuisine. In addition, over the years the restaurant has updated the proposal, including various dishes based on Roman vegetables, depending on the season, such as artichokes, chicory, chicory and broccoli. Finally, next to the culinary proposal of Checchino an extensive wine cellar. In fact, Francesco and Elio, both sommeliers, want to offer a wine experience, with wines not only from Lazio production, but allowing you to vary between wines from Italy and around the world.

We let them tell us five forgotten roman dishesbut that can be tasted here.

Zampi salad

L’zampi salad it is a manifesto of poor cooking. A kind of boiled veal leg sirloin salad, deboned and served warm topped with salsa verde, celery, carrots and beans. This dish falls into the category of appetizers of Roman cuisine. According to the Mariani brothers, he is a to have to of their restaurant, which has contributed to Checchino’s success over the years. The recipes for their dishes, as mentioned above, are the original ones of great-grandmother Firminia, daughter of the founders: “The only change to the recipes is the use of fat – explains Francesco -, for example, lard has been replaced by extra virgin olive oil and each cooking is long and controlled“.

Price: 9 euros

Head of veal

The calf’s head, like all fifth trimester has always been considered a bad cut. In 19th century culture, however, nothing was thrown away, so even the calf’s head was turned into a dish that Checchino helped make history. For the preparation meat, nerves and cartilage of the calf’s head are boiled, deboned and pressed into a bag with the citrus zest, until you get a kind of big salami. From there it is finally sliced ​​and served cold in a salad with extra virgin olive oil and freshly ground black pepper.

Price: 7 euros

Stracciatella in broth

This typical recipe Roman gastronomy it was traditionally prepared to energize those who were sick. It is none other than a soup with egg rags And parsleywith a Beef broth. Thus, the combination of meat and egg met the need to provide a good amount of protein And food. Preparation also includes adding pecorino romano grated with eggs, pour into boiling broth, stirring with a whisk. After the egg has condensed into the broth, the dish is served sprinkled with nutmeg and pepper. Still today the stracciatelle is one of Checchino’s first courses, perfect for dinner.

Price: 9 euros

Beef garofolato

The beef carnation it is a typical dish of the Roman countryside. This specialty is made with meat from adult animals, therefore with a strong and very harsh flavor. Hence the choice to cook it for a long time and to “drive” it, that is to say to flavor it with cloves. In the past, this spice was used to perform two main tasks: disinfection, helping with preservation because there are no refrigerators, and to cover the excessive taste of mature meat with its aroma. The tomato does the rest. Beef muscle, larded with pork cheek slices, needs one cooking about 3 hours over low heat in a saucepan, after mixing with white wine and adding water flush with the meat, as well as the tomatoes. When the meat is cold, it is cut into slices, dipped in the sauce and heated to be served hot. Garofolato is lighter than other stew and therefore suitable for all seasons.

Price: 26 euros

butcher pan

unknown Roman dishes

The butcher’s pan consists of a mixture of entrails: sweetbreads, pajata, liver and kidney. It is sautéed with vinegar, rosemary and garlic flavor. This dish, as well as the cuisine of fifth trimester typical of the Roman tradition, it secretly finds its origin in Slaughterhouse Testaccio. In fact, as Francesco says, “towards the end of the 19th century, the so-called scortichinithose who had the task of skinning the cattle, were paid in kind, or with the fifth quarter“. The butchers received compensation for their hard work used to take it to the taverns near the slaughterhouse to have it cooked. This is how dishes such as the butcher’s pan, less known than the more famous, were born. coda alla vaccinara.

Price: 25 USD

Checchino since 1887. Via di Monte Testaccio, 30 Rome. Tel.06 5743816. To place

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