The Scarpa English-language blogger recently found himself at the LHANGAR wine bar in the village of Barolo where he had his very first taste of Salsiccia di Verduno (above at the top of the mise en place, the farthest from the diner).*
It goes without saying that he was familiar with the famous Salsiccia di Bra, a beef and bacon sausage that’s produced in the city of Bra, Piedmont (where Slow Food and Slow Food Editore, the movement’s publishing house, are located). The sausage is generally consumed raw as an antipasto.
But he had never heard of Salsiccia di Verduno, made in a nearby village famous for its local grape variety Pelaverga.
According to the folks at LHANGAR, the difference from the Bra version is that the Verduno version is made with Pelaverga and Parmigiano Reggiano while the Bra version is not. In the meantime, he’s discovered a few entries on the internets that call it “Salsiccia al Pelaverga.”
But no one really knows the recipe and there seems to be no canonical recipe embraced by all. A classic example of “secret sauce,” as our American colleagues like to say.
Another one of the dishes on the plate at LHANGAR was a classic vitello tonnato (at the bottom of the mise en place, closest to the diner).
This traditional dish — cold veal roast thinly sliced and served with a olive oil-cured tuna, anchovy, and caper sauce (whipped with raw eggs and olive oil, among other ingredients — is a favorite he shares with many Italians.
He also sighted (and tasted) one of his favorite renditions at Osteria More e Macine (above) in the village of La Morra, a stone’s throw from Bra and Verduno.
Look out for more posts on vitello tonnato here on the Scarpa blog. It’s one of the dishes our blogger is most passionate about.
*The name of the wine bar is a play on words: Langa is one of the names used by locals and other wine-focused Italians to refer to the Langhe Hills where Barolo and Barbaresco are produced; hangar has the same meaning as it does in English; in Italian, it’s pronounced with a silent h; as such, LHANGAR sounds like Langa but with an r at the end.