From Gragnano to Rome: let's give the panuozzo the shape it deserves

panuozzo gragnano gusto

Gragnano, a small town on the Sorrento peninsula, is a fertile land for lovers of good food. In addition to being famous for pasta and wine, it is responsible for the creation of a food halfway between bread and pizza, called "panuozzo”, which is among the traditional agri-food products of Campania. Its birth dates back to about thirty years ago (precisely in 1983) gives an idea of Mascolo family which still holds the product patent and registered trademark. Owners of one of the most famous pizzerias in the Gragnano area, the Mascolos invented the panuozzo to offer their customers new but at the same time genuine, good, economical and easy-to-eat food like pizza. The cute name was invented by Giusepppe Mascolo's thirteen-year-old daughter.

How is it accomplished? The dough is the same as pizza but the basic element is the cooking in a wood-fired oven, a factor that cannot be ignored. The other essential factor is the double cooking: one during preparation and the other after filling. The first cooking lasts about 30 minutes and is used to cook the panuozzo dough and then allow it to be cut in two to allow the accumulated steam to escape from a crack on the side. The second cooking is much quicker - about two minutes - and is carried out with the panuozzo already stuffed in order to mix the ingredients and make the product crunchy. This process is the trademark of panuozzo of Gragnano and clearly differentiates it from any calzone or sandwich.

Its appearance is that of a piece of bread 25-30 cm long (which can make 2 to 4 portions) stuffed in many ways: from the classic sausage and broccoli, provola and pancetta or ham and mozzarella up to the more elaborate variations with the addition of ingredients such as tomato, mushrooms, chilli pepper and various vegetables in many combinations. The result is a tasty street food which has now spread to many areas of Italy while remaining a true Campania product. Represents a very valid alternative to pizza, quick to prepare and equally easy to eat due to its goodness.

To fully understand the essence of panuozzo you need to taste it. In Rome there are not many places where you can eat this Campania delicacy but one of these is certainly one the 'Gusto pizzeria. Here you can taste various types of panuozzi stuffed in a traditional way with various combinations of mozzarella and tomatoes or in a more innovative way, for example with pistachio pesto, mortadella and buffalo mozzarella. Come and try the goodness of panuozzo of Gragnano.