The Bruno Sodano farm is a small agricultural reality handed down from generation to generation. The total area is about 6 hectares, partly in rent and partly owned.
For about twenty years the company has adopted a sustainable cultivation method and has choosen to grow traditional Campania horticultural varieties now in danger of extinction among which there are:
The cultivation of these products is done with almost entirely manual operations that respect the environment and the integrity of the product.
The farm is involved in many networks and project: Guardian Farmers of the Campania Region; “Orti Di Napoli” – a Chamber of Commerce project for the recovery of the vegetable germplasm of five products; Gaggiù project; ABC project for the establishment of the Campania herbaceous agrobiodiversity network. It collaborates with the Agricultural University of Portici for the recovery of traditional species and with local administrations to enhance local products. The company participates in the plan of the integral struggle of the Campania Region.
Furthermore we organize guided tours of the company for education project with the schools.
Thanks to the company’s commitment to safeguarding endangered varieties, safeguarding biodiversity and enhancing the company’s production area, Pomigliano D’arco, it has aroused interest and has been invited to several TV programme such as: Linea verde, Mela Verde, Report and reports on Tg5 and Tg3.
Torzella is one of the oldest cabbages in the world. Its history begins 4000 years ago in the Eastern area of the Mediterranean basin. For this reason it is called “greek cabbage”, or curly torza in dialect. In ancient times, farmers, to deal with the climatic harshness, consumed it because it was a satiating food and at the same time low in fat. It was very popular especially among peasant families who lived in the Acerrano-Nolano area.
It is present in the Regional Bank of Campania Vegetable Germplasm and is registered in the Campania Regional Repertoire as a variety at risk of extinction and, as of this year, it is a Slow Food Presidium.
It is a herbaceous plant with an autumn-winter cycle. It has fleshy curly leaves, dark green in color, and is very resistant to cold. The yellow flowers are collected in inflorescences (corymb). The edible product is made up of tender sprouts with leaves, cooked in appetizing dishes of traditional Campania cuisine. The first harvest takes place by removing the central shoot, thus favoring the emission of secondary, smaller shoots, which represent the majority of marketable production. The harvest therefore takes place in several solutions in the months from November to the beginning of April.
For its intense flavor it is ideal for winter soups, when the first colds make it tender. The tradition of consuming this vegetable is mainly linked to the “married soup” together with other leafy vegetables. A very popular traditional dish among peasant families was soup paired with San Marzano tomatoes, but it is also used as a vegetable side dish.
Originally in Europe there were only beans of species belonging to the genus Vigna (cowpea), of sub-Saharan origin. The beans that are commonly used today were first cultivated by the Mexican and Peruvian civilizations 5,000 years ago and were widespread among both the Aztecs and the Incas.
The Fagiolo a Formella owes its dialectal name to its characteristic flat shape of the grain that resembles a button (in Neapolitan formella).
They are found on the market fresh (rarely), dried or canned, in water and salt. It has a characteristic flavor that comes from the strong presence of asparagine inside. Delicate flavor, however, which could be defined as green and fresh and which makes Formella beans ideal companions for fish in the combinations so frequent in modern cuisine. This does not exclude a more traditional use: soups, bean and vegetable soups, pasta and beans, easy to prepare because the shaped beans do not need to be soaked and require a short cooking.
Rich in proteins, like all beans, and a good source of vitamins, Formella beans are included in the Slow Food Ark of Taste and among the Traditional Agri-food Products of Campania, and find their perfect place in the Mediterranean diet: let’s not forget that the arrival of beans, in all their variants, in our lands, was fundamental to integrate the nutrition of the poorest part of the population, subject to disease and death due to nutritional deficiencies, especially protein, when the consumption of meat was still a luxury for few.
The Sodano company is one of the few producers who continue the cultivation of Formella beans, after a period of oblivion that has almost led to their disappearance.
The plant is native to Chile and Ecuador, where due to the tropical climate it offers its fruits all year round, while in our regions it has an annual cycle limited to summer, if grown outdoors. Dominator of Neapolitan gastronomy and widely spread all over the world for its taste as well as for its important dietary properties, the tomato reached European kitchens relatively recently and, although imported already in the sixteenth century, only two centuries later it was used in the supply.
The territory of GiaGiù
GiaGiù is a variety of a bright golden yellow tomato found in the Vesuvian area (slopes of Vesuvius), in the municipality of Herculaneum; the story tells that from the cultivation of the patanara ecotype (piennolo red tomato) from a spontaneous mutation a golden yellow tomato plant appeared. An elderly farmer tried this new variant of the red tomato and, finding it organoleptically very good, decided to keep the seed. Its cultivation on the slopes of Vesuvius, confined until a few years ago only in family gardens, has been present for more than 50 years and only for a few years, thanks to the Federico II UNINA-DIA and ARCA 2010 University, a process of enhancement has begun commercial and distribution throughout the territory.
The unripe fruits have the “typical” green shoulder, when ripe they are of an intense and uniform golden yellow color of an oval shape with slight longitudinal ribs (a characteristic also typical of the red tomato ecotypes of Piennolo del Vesuvio) and medium-sized stylar apex . Distinctive note of this ecotype is the sour flavor well harmonized with the underlying sweetness that releases a persistent tomato aroma. It belongs to the Solanaceae family, the annual herbaceous plant, with indeterminate development. The fruit is a berry weighing between 15-25 grams in the Vesuvian area, while in the Neapolitan plain it varies between 25-35 grams.
It has a strong tomato flavor which makes it ideal for both fresh and canned consumption. Fresh it can be used both raw and cooked, in combination with pasta, pizza, seasonal vegetables and of course with fish