The Italian Relish

Post Relish

The Perfect Pairing for Bruschettas and Cheeses

Generally, knowing a country, even at a summary level, can not be separated from visiting it. The United States is an exception from this point of view: the myth of American culture invades our lives long time before the desire to know it is born in us. Comics, books, music, movies, almost every thing speaks of America every day since forever. When this desire finally arrives with growth, we must therefore start from an imaginary of United States that inevitably influences our cognitive process. It is quite intuitive as it is a rather tortuous path that can sometimes generate hitches.

Hot Dog Vendor Relish

Like me, I’m sure you have seen for example at least one hundred films set in the multifaceted New York. The protagonist passes on the smoky grids placed at the sides of the walk, through streets teeming with people busy in a frenzied bustle, approaching his thumb and forefinger at the corners of his mouth, whistles and magically a yellow cab stops, and then immediately take him away towards his destination. When the story want to tell us that the protagonist belongs to the working class and comes “from the street”, before letting him take the taxi, it makes him approach a small cart in bright pastel colors to take a hot dog. The Greek immigrant who runs it picks up a still steaming Frankfurter from a cylindrical container integrated into the shelf, rests the pre-cut bun on a napkin, opens it with the outside of the pliers, put the frankfurter in the middle and at this point comes a question what an unhappy dubbing translates into “mostarda or cucumber?”

It is from this point that our cognitive process starts. How truly did this image come to us? The Hot Dog certainly: the bun is industrial and not very respectful of the original features, in place of the Frankfurter are used some cheap German würstel but in a very generous way we could say that the Hot Dog has breached our habits, being now quite common for at least a couple of decades in bars, sandwich shops and similar, perhaps because they’re not so far from our “sandwich with salamella”. A little less celebrated the meeting with the “mostarda” (mostarda is a typical italian winter side for stewed meat and it represent a classic misunderstanding with the english name “mustard”). Completely non-existent instead the use of what has been translated with “cucumbers”, which in reality in the form used on Hot Dogs would be the Relish, a sort of mixture of cucumbers and other vegetables, flavored and pickled. Do you remember the Farcitoast (italian vinegary vegetables for sandwiches of some years ago)? Here’s something like that vaguely.

.

Hot Dog con Relish

Objectively it can be understood: it is not exactly that kind of flavors for which we generally go crazy. It is equally true that the term “relish” in the USA is synonymous with that specific condiment but more generally it is simply

Relish

discernible vegetable or fruit pieces in a sauce, although the sauce is subordinate in character to the vegetable or fruit pieces

So even an Ajvar sauce is technically a relish, as well as a Chutney or a Chimichurri sauce. Why not try to look for recipes closer to our culture, a little ‘as we did in the post of Italianization of Cheese Dip? These are the most interesting recipes I found on the net:

Zucchini Relish

Relish Zucchine
Credits: justasmidgen.com

10 cups minced zucchini
3 cups minced onions
5 tbsp salt
3 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp turmeric
3 cups white vinegar
1 tsp mustard powder
1 tsp black pepper

Procedure: Add the two minced vegetables to the salt in a container, seal it with some film and let it rest for 10 hours. Rinse everything in a colander, press the back of the spoon to release as much water as possible. Add the vegetables in a pot, add the other ingredients, stir and boil for 30 minutes, stirring repeatedly. Fill in the sterilized jars, close them, place them in a pot and fill it with water almost to the edge of the jars, bring to a boil and let simmer slowly for 15 minutes. Allow to cool in water before withdrawing.

Endives and Dry Tomatoes

Radicchio Relish
Credits: foodandwines.com

1/2 cup dry tomatoes
1/2 cup of Kalamata olives deprived of the hazel
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tbsp lemon zests cut in strips
1 tsp thyme
8 cut in half and grilled endives heads
3 bay leafs
q.b. salt and pepper

Procedure: Combine all the ingredients in a food processor and work them until you obtain a homogeneous pass. Fill in the sterilized jars, place them in a pot and fill it with water almost to the edge of the jars, bring to a boil and let simmer slowly for 15 minutes. Allow to cool in water before withdrawing.

Olive Relish

Relish Olive
Credits: cdkitchen.com

1/2 cup green olives
1/2 cup black olives
1/4 cup minced onions
1/4 cup minced parsley
2 tbsp balsamico vinegar
1 minced garlic clove
1 tsp minced cappers
1/4 tsp oregano
1/2 cup olive oil

Procedure: Chop all the ingredients by hand until you get a coarse but homogeneous mince. Fill in the sterilized jars, place them in a pot and fill it with water almost to the edge of the jars, bring to a boil and let simmer slowly for 15 minutes. Allow to cool in water before withdrawing.

Cherry Tomatoes Relish

Relish Cherry Tomatoes
Credits: thewholeserving.com

500 gr cherry tomatoes
1/2 cup minced onion
1/2 cup minced carrots
3 smashed garlic cloves
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup apple vinegar
3 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
2 tbsp brown sugar
q.b. salt and pepper

Procedure:

In a foil pan add the tomatoes, brown sugar, salt, pepper and oil and leave in indirect cooking in a smoker at 170° C for 30 minutes. Separately sauté the onion, the carrot in a saucepan with a tablespoon of olive oil. Add the garlic and brown it. Then add the rest of the ingredients in addition to the chopped tomatoes. Let simmer over a low heat for 20 minutes. Fill in the sterilized jars filling with vinegar, close them, place them in a pot and fill it with water almost to the edge of the jars, bring to a boil and let simmer slowly for 15 minutes. Allow to cool in water before withdrawing.

Probably we will never use Italian relish on a hot dog but certainly lend themselves very well on bruschetta, as an accompaniment to cheese or grilled meats with a neutral taste like chicken and turkey. And on what would you see them?

Written By
More from Boss

The Duquatridge

The Gourmet version of Turducken The barbecue culture is soaked in America to the...
Read More

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *