True Neapolitan pizza, a model for the rougail sausage?

Tuesday 17 January, 12.30 pm, Le Tampon. In the laboratory of Mam’zelle Pizza, a company known and recognized for the quality of his work, Thierry Gourreau, the boss, is about to take his turn in the relay of the “Vera Pizza Day”, a world marathon on “YouTube” organized by the AVPN (Verace Neapolitan Pizza Association) for three years, in order to promote and transmit the authentic Neapolitan pizza recipe. The AVPN is a non-profit association, founded in June 1984 in Naples, where its headquarters are located. Its raison d’être can be read on its website: “The ancient Neapolitan pizza masters, faced with the development of the large fast food chains as well as the enormous diffusion and sometimes improper use of the denomination “true Neapolitan pizza” ( real Neapolitan pizza), have decided to create an association, with regulations, to defend and enhance pizza, produced and processed according to ancient Neapolitan traditions and customs.”
Very precise specifications are drawn up, detailing the ingredients, the proportions, the cooking time and even the tools to be used, such as the type of oven. This work allows them to first obtain the AOC (Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée), before moving on to the UNESCO World Heritage list in 2017. “Pizza makers around the world who claim to make true Neapolitan pizza must today ask the approval to this association, materialized by the “Verace Pizza Napoletana” logo attached to a local number, explains Thierry Gourreau. a stamp “real rougail sausage from Reunion”. To obtain such a result, it would first be necessary, as the Italians, carry out historical or even anthropological research work to accredit the “simple” rougail sausage from Reunionese. Obtaining general consensus around the recipe is a different matter on an island where every family has its make this dish. An experiment attempted last year in the presence of several Réunion cooks confirmed this fact. If everyone agrees fairly well on the generalities, the details are a source of divergence. What ingredients to use? In what proportions? How to prepare them? What kind of cooking? What visual aspect should the dish offer?

Promote the culinary tradition

But first one might ask whether the rougail sausage needs a charter and a registration with Unesco. Yes why? For the same reason that the Neapolitans did for their pizza, which has become an international dish, subject to all interpretations.
To use a railway metaphor, the rougail sausage is just the locomotive of the great train of the Reunionse culinary tradition. Being able to engrave the basic recipe of this dish in stone would make it better known and, above all, respected. This does not prevent reinterpretations (after all, Thierry Gourreau has created a pizza with local flavours, inspired by the true Neapolitan), but allows the name of the dish to be “sacralised” so as to no longer see imaginative or dubious variants being called “Reunion sausage rougail” from their creators, professional or otherwise. More importantly: this recognition would also benefit the entire culinary tradition of Péi, which, after extensive research into its origins, functioning and dishes, could follow the rougail sausage in a world heritage list, and join the “Pythons, circuses and ramparts” as well as the Maloya.
Can all Reunion chefs agree on a basic recipe for rougail sausage? There is the question. We have not come out of the far far.

Alexandre Begue

The rule :

> History of the tomato…
That’s what pizza and rougail sausage have in common! In this case, if the inhabitants of Réunion are satisfied with the péi tomato, of which we have noticed a significant drop in quality for several years (weak taste, lack of aroma), it is impossible to use the latter to make true Neapolitan pizza. To do this, use “San Marzano dell’Agro Sarnese-nocerino DOP, Pomodorini di Corbara (Corbarino), “Pomodorino del piennolo del Vesuvio” DOP or other typical fresh tomato preferably with a delicate balance between the acid and sweet components” declares the ‘AVPN “Artisanal tomatoes, Campania, sunny and sweet. They have a particular flavor and texture. When you eat a good pizza, you want to rediscover that tomato flavor”, says Thierry Gourreau, owner of Mam’zelle Pizza. you have to get up early to find this type of specimen in the fair markets, except (perhaps) on the counters of a few specialized breeders like, as they produce it. The other solution, canned tomatoes. But again, it is not to take any moke for post-cyclone problem solving. The association recommends the “San Marzano peeled tomato from Agro Sarnese-Nocerino DOP” and adds “the use of peeled tomatoes is authorized fresh or industrial ato of the “Rome type long tomato”. Product that must be crushed manually in order not to break the seeds, a source of unwanted acidity. The result is there: we have tomatoes that smell… tomatoes! Today, in Reunion, tasty field tomatoes, ripened on the plant, as in the past, are very rare. This should be one of the requirements of a specification of “real” rougail reunionese sausage!

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