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Matteo Aloe’s recipe for pappa al pomodoro with mozzarella and ’nduja | Food

Every region in Italy has a different method and recipe to salvage waste bread, from ribollita to polpette to panzanella. My favourite is the evergreen, or ever-red, pappa al pomodoro. As with many of Italy’s staple dishes, such as pizza or pasta, the pappa is a base to play with. In this case, I have added buffalo mozzarella, for its fresh and rich flavours, and melted Calabrian ’nduja, for a spicy twist that reminds me of home.

Serves: 4
Prep time: 10 mins
Cooking time: 20 mins

60g extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves
800g tomato sauce
600g stale sourdough bread
Fresh basil leaves
80g parmigiano reggiano
50g Calabrian ’nduja
100g whole buffalo mozzarella
Black peppercorn

Gently heat three tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil in a pot, with two garlic cloves. Add the tomato sauce (try to find a rich, organic one or even better, make your own with fresh tomatoes from the garden). Leave to cook for about 10 minutes on a medium heat. Then remove the garlic cloves from the tomato sauce.

Cut the stale bread in cubes, add to the tomato sauce and mix well with a wooden spoon.

Keep cooking at low heat for five minutes, then switch off the heat and add a generous glug of olive oil, as well as the fresh basil and grated parmigiano reggiano, and gently stir. Heat the ’nduja in a small frying pan, at the lowest possible heat, until warmed through.

To serve, for each diner, spoon five tablespoons of the pappa in a bowl, scoop a quarter of the ’nduja into the middle and top with the whole buffalo mozzarella (which should be at room temperature). Garnish with more basil leaves and peppercorn.

Matteo Aloe is the chef founder of Radio Alice Pizzeria and Berbere Pizzeria

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