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Baked Pear and Tavern Biscuits (El Peruz e i Biscoti da Ostaria)

Contributor: Nono Gigio


Baked Pear and Tavern Biscuits

Venetian-Alpago’s Sweets (Dol’i venetopagoti)

Venice ancestors came to Venice centuries ago, carrying wood from the Alpago in rafts down the Piave River. They were dealing trunks of a coppice they owned in Carpineto, a village in the circumdary of Chies, before the Italians came and requisitioned the wood to become property of the State. Nice people!

Some of the forbearers remained working in the Arsenal, two of them opened a squero, or boat building yard in rio terà del Rosario in the Salute area. Others started jobs like a baker or a pastry cook.

Here are the ways to cook the Pevarini and the Storti in the ancient way:

EL PERUZ

The Cannelline or Russets variety, pears with the particular rust brown peel, medium sized is needed. They just needed to be dust and not washed! It was once eaten on a piece of greased paper that is licked after the pear is gone, while standing.

Put sugar in a tall baking tin, enough for the quantity of pears, and 1 to 2 glasses of water with a pinch of salt. Wrap with gauze two cloves and a fragment of cinnamon, and put them in the pot with the pears in the fire. Cover the tin with a lid or grease-proof paper.
It is cooked when the pears start to wrinkle.

I PEVARINI

Before, molasses was used, but since it is quite difficult to be found now, sugar will be used instead.

Ingredients:

1 kilo of molasses or sugar
100 g refined lard
a couple spoonful fine ground white pepper
3 ammonium carbonate (found at chemist’s shops) or brewer’s yeast used in baking
wheat flour (enough to make a soft paste out of the whole ingredients)

Method:

Cut the paste in the desired cookie size and flatten the biscuits side to side on a paper sheet greased with butter, and then bake in the oven at moderate heat. Just out of the oven, brush their tops with sugared water.

I STORTI

Similar to the previous but the spices and nuts, such as cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, roughly grinded almonds, nuts and pine-seeds, are in higher doses. The dough in this case, must stand at least for 24 hours before baking the cookies. A good compromise to use in replacement of molasses and sugar can be half sugar melted in water and half honey.

To remove the hotness from the mouth after eating this cookie, it is advisable to bite some fresh apple.

I ZALETI

Ingredients:

125 g yellow maize meal
125 g wheat flour
100 g butter
75 g sugar
2 pcs eggs
50 g sultana raisins moistened for a couple of hours in a shot of grappa (or other aromatic spirits)
grated peel of 1 pc lemon
pinch of vanilla
milk, as needed
pinch of salt.

Method:

Mix aside the maize and the wheat. Whip the eggs and sugar then add the salt, raisins dried on a canvas, and all other ingredients. Knead it well and keep on working the dough for five minutes. If needed add sips of milk.

Shape the dough in little loaves and set them on a paper greased with butter. Put in the oven at 180o for about 15 minutes. Let them warm down and sprinkle with abundant icing sugar.

Versione Originale in Veneziano:

Dolçi Venetopagoti

I me antenati i xe vegnui a Venexia secoli fa portando zo da l’Alpago el legname del boschetto che i gaveva a Carpineto, in comune de Chies, co le zatare par la Piave. (co xe riva i ‘taliani i ‘na roba el bosco parche i lo ga demaniliza barva zente!).

Serti i se ga ferma andando a lavorar in Arsenal, do i se ga verto un squero da barche a la Salute, in rio tera del rosario, e antri i se ga metuo a far i forneri o i scaleteri.
Ma mi vojo parlar de sti ultimi, che xe la me assendensa diretta: ne nono fava el forner a la Zuecca e me pare el scaleter a Rialto, me zarmani, invessi, uno a la toleta e stantro a s.Zuane Grisostomo.

Deto questo, ve vojo insegnar a far i PEVARINI come che se usava ‘na volta e i ZALETI e el PERUZ.

Par chi che no lo savesse, i veci Pagoti che zirava par le ostaria a vendar Forti, pavarini, zaleti e el peruz i jera me parenti… e i se ga fato un saco de case col peruz e co i storti…bonta lora)

Alora par far i PEVARINI e i STORTI, che squasi xe la stessa roba, se fa cussi:

I PEVARINI

Lori i doparava la melassa, ma siccome no se la trova piu, se la sostituisse col zucaro, anca se no xe proprio la stessa roba…

Donca: un chilo de melassa, o de zucaro, e un eto de struto raffina, un per de bei scujeroni de pevare buanco masena fin e 3 scujeroni de carbonato de ammonio (se lo tiol dal spezial, o farmacista), o si no del lievito de bira: ma quelo del forner.

La farina che ocore par impastar tuto. La pasta la ga da risultar bea morbida. Se la riduse a la misura che se vol e la se piatisse, se sistema i pevarini su �na carta imbutirada e se li mete in forno a calor modera.

Apena che se li cava fora, se li spesela co aqua e zucaro.

I STORTI

Come sora, ma se ghe zonta anca broche de garofano, nose moscata, canela, mandole, nose e pignoli tritai, ma se li lassa a riposar par almanco 24 ore. Volendo far un impasto mejo, al posto de la melassa se pol usar meta zucaro descola n l’aqua e meta miel.

Par chi che ga el palato delicato e no tiene l picante, dopo magnai el pol tior un spigolo de pomo…

I ZALETI

Ghe vol 125 grami de farina de polenta zala e 125 de farina de fior, 1 eto de butirro, 75 grami de zucaro, do vovi, mezo eto de uveta sultanina fata rinvegnier in un bicerin de senapa, la scorza de un limon gratada, u spissego de vaniglia, late quanto che ghe ne ocore e un spissego de sal.

A parte ti smissi le do farine.
Ti sbati i vovi col zucaro, ti ghe meti el sal, l’uveta sugada su ‘na canevassa, e tuto el resto.
Ti impasti ben tuto e ti lo lavori par 5 minuti. Se ocore ti ghe zonti ‘na scianta de late.

Ti fa de le pagnochele de la misura che ti vol e ti le meti su ‘na carta imbutirada e ti li meti in forno a 180 gradi par 15 minuti o par quelo che serve, data la misura che ti ghe ga da.
Co ti li ga cavai ti lassi che i se intiepidissa e dopo ti ghe da ‘na bea spolverada de zucaro a velo.

EL PERUZ

Ghe vol i pereti canelini, quei co la scorsa rusene e che no i sia tanto grandi. Se li spolvera: no se li lava!

Su ‘na tecia alta ti ghe meti su caro quanto che el te ocore par la quantita dei peri, e un goto o do de aqua, un spissegheto de sal e su un tocheto de garza ti ghe meti do broche de garofano e un tocheto de canela in cana, ti meti dentro i peri e ti coversi co el covercio o co ‘na carta oleata.

Co i peruz i scominsia a far le grespe, alora i se coti.

‘na volta se li magnava su un toco de carta oleata e in pie…e dopo ti licavi anca la carta… El Barba del peruz el zirava co sta bea caldiera de rame lustra co fa un specio… e co un steco de betulla el te impirava sto peruz… che el te bagnava el barbusso…

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