Articolo disponibile anche in: Italian

“Il bollito” is a typical dish of many areas of Italy. It is often served with varying sauces.

In Tuscan (and Chianti) there is a grand family tradition of the dish. In fact, it is difficult to find “bollito” on the menu unless it is tied to certain gastronomic areas.

First of all, as Francesco Sorelli describes in his wonderful book, “La Toscana di Ruffino” (here on Amazon), it is a question of semantice. Here we speak about “lesso” as a combination of various meats that are boiled together to make an excellect broth.

“Boiled meat,” says Sorelli, “makes up an excellent dish which is served as a second course, after its broth, and accompanied by “salsa verde”, a sauce based on parsley, which originated in Piedmont but is also popular in Tuscany”.

Tuscan “lesso” is made up of beef and hen boiled together with the classic soup greens: onion, celeray and carrots. It takes longer to boil the beef, so the hen is added while the meat is cooking.

“Salsa verde” (literally, green sauce), is a perfect accompaniment. For its preparation, chop parsley with salted anchovies, garlic, the inside of unsalted bread and a bit of olive oil.

Combining the two will give you an excellent second course. With the leftover beef, you can prepare one of the tastiest dishes of our recycled cuisine: the “francesina”, or “lesso rifatto”.

Francesco Sorelli – Il Bisarno Oltre la SieveFoto di Sandra Pilacchi