The Italian Carnival between “chiacchiere” fried pastries and stories

The Italian Carnival celebrations start this week till March 5th, on the  famous Fat Tuesday. Which ends all the Carnival celebrations and begins the Lent period.

The origins of Carnival date back to the Roman Saturnalia festival and Dionysian feasts in Greece. A feast characterized by unrestrained enjoyment and an opportunity to upend and subvert norms.

Jokes, masks, fun and good food characterize the Carnival celebrated in Alta Valle del Sele, where our family farm is located. Through the stories of our grandparents, and parents, we realized that Carnival celebrations completely changed compared to the 40s, 50s and 60s.

They used to disguise themselves with old clothes found at home, the typical “mascarata”, a costume party. They used to visit especially their neighbours, with improvised camouflages – the masks were called “ciavon”. Who opened the door had to guess the identity of the person hidden under the mask and while singing, dancing and joking, especially with the seniors of the house. Once the identity of the “mask” was revealed, bread and sausage were offered, as well as the unfailing “Chiacchiere” fried pastries (a dough made with extra virgin olive oil).

For the Fat Tuesday they prepared a soup with pork offal, fusilli with tomato sauce  made with small pieces of pork meat – stuffed hen and Chiacchiere.

The leftovers fusilli were not eaten the day after but they let eat them to the hens because believed that they could produce more eggs.

“Chiacchiere” fried pastries recipe

Typical sweet dessert of the Alta Valle del Sele Carnival, we want to propose here our ancient recipe. This year we prepared the dough with semi-wholemeal Risciola flour from the PiantaGrani, an ancient wheat from the Alta Valle del Sele and of course our extra virgin olive oil that we use to mix the doughs.

  • 400 g of semi-wholemeal Risciola flour, or Flour 00 Type
  • 3 eggs
  • 40 g of extra virgin olive oil
  • 40 g of sugar
  • Half glass of Vermouth
  • A pinch of salt
  • Grated lemon skin
Casa Iuorio chiacchiere italian carnival

Our extra virgin olive oil used to mix the dough.

 

Casa Iuorio chiacchiere dough

The dough is ready.

 

Chiacchere

Chiacchiere.

 

Chiacchiere on the table for the tasting

Chiacchiere on the table for the tasting.