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Piedmontese mixed boiled meat

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Mixed boiled meat is a typical specialty of Piedmontese cuisine. It is a second course consisting of different cuts of meat that are boiled for a long time and served accompanied by boiled vegetables and sauces.
We found the text we propose in a book that we use for inspiration in our kitchen. Hoping to whet your curiosity about this dish of our culture, happy reading!

From Giovanni Goria’s “hilly cuisine of hilly Piedmont and winemaker”:
The great historical Piedmontese “Bollito Misto”, from all the best parts of the great white breed calf “della fassone” (it is said that there are 7 “cuts”, plus 7 “trinkets or ornaments”, with 7 baths and almost 7 side dishes! ) is the most loved and most appreciated dish of the ancient Piedmontese tradition, surviving the novelties of modern life.
Historically, this solid, healthy and tasty boiled meat of the great white veal “della fassone” reared on grass from our meadows, is the obligatory passage from an ancient and poor diet in which the common people ate little meat (only the feast, at most Sunday), including the peasant owners, to a current regime in which everyone eats, often not always, the many types of meat present in butchers, among which, however, the meat par excellence is always that of veal: cutlets and the slices sautéed when in a hurry, the pieces of roast and braised meat, and of mixed boiled meat, with the relative baths or sauces, when you have time to eat well. Basically, on Sundays, or when there are guests.

So, having established and firmly established that mixed boiled meat is the leader of historic Piedmontese cuisine, let’s face it the fixed points, for those who want to do it in full or reduced edition, for the family and guests:
1 The calf chosen is preferably of the Piedmontese breed, with silky white satin hair, variety “della fassone” or “from the horse thigh” or “from the triple butt”, grown florid and happy in a corner of the Piedmontese countryside of Asti or Langhe ; there he prepared himself in serenity for his lofty mission, which is to provide a supreme, royal Bollito, like the one that King Vittorio Emanuele II ate in his Moncalvesi raids in the mid-1800s. Here are the requirements of the perfect boiled calf: that it has never worked, nor did heavy sports or mountaineering; who has just passed the year, but has never known love, let’s not let him see a heifer from a distance; that he fed only on bran, granetto, dry bread, sweet beet pulp, beans, maize, soy and hay from our dry and fragrant meadows; that he is of a cheerful and benign character, alien to nervousness and quarrels, he has never played a part in any party, he is ignorant of all taxes and sting; is about 15 months old, weighs around 600 kilos, the idea of ​​losing weight for the figure has never crossed his mind; be virgin and happy.
2 The cooking will be carried out in fine water from the Monferrato aquifer (but the aqueduct is fine too!), Scented with vegetables and flavors: celery, cane and leaf, carrot, onion battened with cloves, parsley stalks, bay leaves, rosemary and sage, leek green, cinnamon sliver, black peppercorns. The meats must come to the table cooked right, at a right point between softness and crunchiness, very hot. 3 The diner must be well “empty”, rested, well-disposed, do not calculate calories, do not go crazy to discard the fatty parts of the boiled meat (boiled meat “only lean” is lame!). Use a sharp knife and a plate larger than normal, or rather two plates, each one must have 15 pieces of meat in the plate, it is recommended in three stages (5 pieces at a time without “skipping” any). Do not mix the wet ones, try them all 7. Do not drink water, especially in the beginning, but only Barbera. Don’t be in a hurry to finish, bite small in the bread, big in the flesh: it’s a gentleman’s meal.
4 The bread should preferably be large monferrine country “gray”; and “King Carlo Alberto’s bread”, that is walnuts, oil and pepper.The wines a good Italian white wine, better sparkling or sparkling, for an aperitif; a beautiful red, here in Piedmont a young and lively Barbera is a must at first, then a firm and strong Barbera for two or three years for the entire duration of the boiled meat; we mean, a nice sparkling wine on the dessert.
And here is the “battle” order of the great Bollito Misto.
Standing aperitif: snacks of butter and anchovy, and sweet cacciatorino, soft pure pork with garlic and Barbera.
On the table: 1. Bread and wine; 2. Bowls of coarse salt, previously crumbled with the bottle, which it is advisable to sprinkle on the hot meat in the dish, then removing it with a knife when making the bite; 3. Saucers of butter, for those who want to mash it with hot potatoes (excellent with boiled meat); 4, bottles or ampoules of good extra virgin olive oil, both to season potatoes and to lengthen the wet ones; and ampoules of strong red wine vinegar, for the same purpose (touch up the wet ones).
The Grande Bollito comes into the dining room, and the guests sit at the table, and the Bollito only then is brought in sauce on large planks or sedans or at least large plates, in immense and steaming chunks, then portioned by two or three scalchi with long sharp knives like razors, which fill the plates of the diners several times, 5.7 pieces at a time, in addition to all the “encores” requested by each.

The Grande Bollito is composed as follows:
7 cuts of pulp: 1.tenerone (from the neck, or cup); 2. scaramella or thin or fat-thin (belly, side); 3 thigh muscle or false-out; 4. Zampino; 5. Hen; 6. Bow tip; 7. Under palette or priest’s hat.
7 trimmings or ornaments: 1. Language; 2. Head, complete with nose; 3. Tail; 4. Zampino; 5. Hen; 6. Cotechino; 7. Pour or filled pocket; plus 1 reminder: roast loin (fatty breast cover, heavily flavored with garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper, roasted and poached at great heat).
7 wet: 1. Rustic green bath (of the sharecropper); 2. Rich green bath (of the owner); 3. Red or tomatiche bath; 4. Bath of the royal hunts; 5. Horseradish or horseradish, and yellow mustard; 6 saossa d’avije (honey, walnuts and mustard); 7. Grape mustard or “cognà”.
3 side dishes: 1. Boiled white potatoes; 2. Spinach braised in butter, garlic, anchovy; 3. “famiole” or sautéed nails or onion salad boiled in water, red wine, vinegar, sugar, with carnation and cinnamon.
Follow-up and conclusion of the banquet:
Small cup of broth of all cuts, very narrow, dark, highly concentrated: completed with a drop of Barbera, or with grated Parmesan cheese;
Dessert: a hot barbera zabaglione (“arsumà”) with wheat biscuits, egg and butto (“torcètt”) from the owner is fine; baskets of local fruit and “grape I can”; closes the cafe.
This is the historic Bollito. You drink a grappa and skip dinner.


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