Recipe: Frico, the bulwark of the villages of Carnia
Friday 12 october 2018
A potato pie, crispy outside and creamy inside. A Friulian icon, an ancient dish that expresses simple and genuine flavors, delicious in their wise juxtaposition
It is one of the symbols of Friulian gastronomy and is born in the villages of the Carnia, in particular in Tolmezzo. A fifteenth-century tradition that has covered the centuries and recalls the period in which this cake was made to use the scraps of cheese - defined "strissulis" - which exceeded once the shaping of the forms has been completed. As often happens, the versions of this delicacy are numerous and widespread is also the frico enriched with small cuttings of speck or vegetables. To make frico it is fundamental to choose cheese, that is Montasio but, alternatively, it is possible to use any seasoned or semi-matured cheese. A curiosity: the frico is inspired by the name of a board game, a "cultural battle" between the cities of Udine and Trieste. It is called, in fact, "frico" and the pieces have exactly the shape of the pie while the dice are colored Tocai and Teran, or two of the typical wines of the respective provinces.
700 grams of potatoes
100 grams of Montasio cheese, aged or seasoned in small cubes
150 grams of fresh Montasio cheese or other fresh cheese (Asiago type)
100 grams of Montasio mezzano cheese or other medium-aged cheese
2 medium onions
extra virgin olive oil (or 2 tablespoons of bacon fat)
Cut all the cheeses into small cubes, then peel and dice the potatoes and place them in a pot. Cover with cold water, add salt and bring to a boil. Once the potatoes are cooked, drain them, mash them and put them aside. Finely slice the onion and brown it in a large pan - about 24 cm and at least 5 cm high - with a couple of tablespoons of oil or, alternatively, with two tablespoons of bacon. When the onion has softened, add the potatoes and the cheese then mix well every three to four minutes to facilitate the melting of the Montasio cheese and its amalgamation with the potatoes. Cook for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Once the cheese has melted, level the surface and cook the frico over medium heat, turning it - like an omelette - every ten minutes and for about half an hour until a darker crust is formed on both sides . At this point turn off the heat, transfer the potato frico on a serving dish and serve hot.