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San Marzano

San Marzano
The particularity of harvesting the San Marzano tomatoes explained by an expert 1024 536 Alessandra

The particularity of harvesting the San Marzano tomatoes explained by an expert

Why San Marzano tomatoes are so special and how their harvesting process changes according to their specificities? We have asked this to Tommaso Romano, President of Consorzio di Tutela del Pomodoro San Marzano DOP dell’Agro Nocerino Sarnese (the producers association for the San Marzano DOP tomato of the Agro Nocerino Sarnese region).

While it looks like so many vegetables, the San Marzano actually differs a lot from the other tomatoes.  Above all, it comes from a more delicate plant and for this reason it requires more attention, from the field to the table.

«The harvest of San Marzano tomatoes lasts about 50 days (from the beginning of August to the end of September) and the conservation process has to be started within a few hours, to preserve its intense aroma and fresh and sweet taste» – explains Tommaso Romano, president of the Consorzio di Tutela del Pomodoro San Marzano DOP, entrepreneur and passionate about the peculiarities of his land.

«This year the harvesting phase will be slightly shorter compared to the usual, due to the great heat of the 2017 season! – continues Tommaso Romano – It is possible that this time we will not reach the doors of autumn.»

But how does it work this important moment that precedes the factory processing?

In order to understand it, we need to dispel the classic myths of city-made experiences, on terraces and balconies. Tomato plants are not compact bushes, but they develop in height.
Harvesting the San Marzano, therefore, is an articulated process divided into 4 steps.

4 steps, around 10 days each apart, to pick the vegetables from the base of the plants, where the tomato matures first because it is more at contact with the heat of the earth, and then slowly pick the higher fruits.
«Every stage of the San Marzano harvesting is a strictly manual work – concludes Romano – which increases working times compared to other types of tomato, but fully respects the product.» read more

raccolta con civitiello e fortunato
Harvest Diary 2017: A day with Davide Civitiello and Simone Fortunato 845 445 Alessandra

Harvest Diary 2017: A day with Davide Civitiello and Simone Fortunato

So much work, but a lot of satisfaction too: Summer is the time of harvest and of continuous quality testing for Ciao. This year, we brought with us an exceptional team of tasters – the World Pizza Champions Simone Fortunato and Davide Civitiello – to see first-hand the quality of our tomorrow tomatoes, starting right from the first step. Here is the story of this special day.

A summer both hot and exceptional for our fields, with record temperatures that forced us to work in shorter times to keep the product intact as freshly picked, but that at the same time that also brought intense colors and flavors to our crops.

We asked to two exceptional testers – Simone Fortunato, three times world champion for the fast pizza category, and Davide Civitiello, champion for the TSG pizza, both winners of the Caputo Trophy – to touch with first-hand the raw materials of our 2017-2018 production.

«Pizza is a dish strictly tied to the ground,” – tells Davide Civitiello – “because deepening your dough technique is not enough to produce excellence, as you have to carefully select raw materials and get to know their ingredients in detail. Pizza is a dish full of history, but also of stories: those of our producers from Campania region!»

For Davide Civitiello and Simone Fortunato a tour among the most lively colors of Campania: the red of our fields of PDO San Marzano tomatoes, but also the bright green of our basil crops that we add leaf after leaf to the peeled tomato cans for the American market.

«I had never seen how the basil grows – says Simone Fortunato of Pizzeria Diaz – Finding out first-hands how the ingredients that I pick each day for my pizzas grow has been stimulating, but also very instructive. For a pizza maker who wants to make a difference, it is very important to carefully select the products of their menu and know how to handle them by mastering all their properties.»

The day has been closed by a tour through the various steps of peeled tomato production, during which our pizza makers have seen how the tomatoes move from the field to the can just in a few hours, so to lose nothing of their fragrance and flavor.

«Walking among the tins that were being filled with peeled tomatoes – concludes Davide Civitiello – has been a bit like going back to my grandmother’s time, when the summer had the scent of the earth and of the boiled tomatoes!»

The memory that Simone Fortunato has taken home is instead that of basil’s aroma, perhaps because it is linked to a great adventure that he is about to begin. On September 22, Sorrento will be the cradle of a new chain of pizzerias: Basilico Italia, who will see him as the pizza maker executive manager, in collaboration with Maurizio Mastellone’s organizational experience.

Sorrento Peninsula will be the first step, but the goal is to bring the excellence of the great products from the Campania region to all of Italy.

What does that have to do with Ciao? We will tell you very soon!