Man, what a cabbage!
A beautiful and good vegetable, a symbol of the Montalto Dora area
The Savoy Cabbage of Montalto Dora
A typical product of Canavese, savoy cabbage has long been known in restaurants and markets in Piedmont, Aosta Valley and Lombardy for its excellent organoleptic characteristics. It can be recognized by the morphology of the "head" and the boiling and color of the leaves. The flavor, characteristic and unmistakable, is a harmonious combination of sugars and aromas typical of this noble crucifer, botanically recognized as the "sabauda" variety.
Just think that in 1996 there was only one farmer left in Montalto Dora, producing about 300 Savoy cabbage plants. In order not to lose such a unique product, and so strongly linked to the land, it took years of study and laboratory analysis, which led to 10 guidelines to define the typicality of this vegetable.
The product is so tied to its land that every year, at the end of November, when the first frosts make the cabbage leaves more tender and flavorful, the Sagra del Cavolo Verza is organized in Montalto Dora. At its first edition, just in 1996, the 41 families originally from the village (and we are talking about old people, those who lived here in the 1940s and even earlier) chose the cabbage ecotype that brought them back to their original taste. Result: 97 percent shared the same choice.
Ugly a cabbage!
There are associations for the defense of old varieties of apples, there are orchards that have become ecomuseums to encourage the preservation of varieties, wouldn't it be time to do something about cabbage too? Cabbage, besides being good, is beautiful; it is the only vegetable that can rival roses. After all, among the most beautiful of these flowers are the "cabbage" roses, which are inspired by the round shapes of this vegetable!
Besides being good and beautiful, savoy cabbage is known for its beneficial properties. Cato the Censor already spoke of 27 ailments that could be cured by savoy cabbage, and even today many researchers highlight the medicinal properties of this vegetable, which, before the introduction of the potato and corn, helped feed entire populations.
A real panacea is raw cabbage salad: the raw leaves, cut into strips, retain all its beneficial properties and go wonderfully with chopped salted anchovies, garlic, olive oil and vinegar. Two more delicious recipes follow, proposed by the Municipality of Montalto Dora at a past edition of the "Festa." And once again: long live the Cabbage!
Ingredients Preparation Recipe
Montaltese-style cabbage soup
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