Here in the shadow of "sterminator Vesevo" (a memory of the Italian poet Leopardi), thanks to the fertility of the soil, there is jubilation of flavours and fragrances.
Apricots, tender, sweet and juicy, they were already appreciated by the Romans, are called "crisommole", a term that derives from the Greek dialect (golden apples). Very popular is also the apple "annurca bell IGP", already depicted in the frescoes of the Casa dei Cervi in Herculaneum, that with its special food properties, is conquering the markets of central and northern Italy.
Exceptional tastes are also offered by "cherries", "plums di Somma", "uva catalanesca", planted here by Alfonso I of Aragon in 1450.
Sweet and savoury are also the "khaki" (or lotus) and the "percoca" (yellow peach). There is a ritual for this last mentioned fruit, that in the Summer is served in red wine, and is said to have been introduced by the Spanish conquerors, masters of sangria.
Among the vegetables excels "piennolo" tomatoes, a small round shape tomato, that offers the final touch to a lot of typical recipes. Collected in "scocche" (artificial bunches), the tomatoes are usually stored in well ventilated cellars, so that they can be consumed until the end of the Winter Season.
The local cuisine also uses aromatic pine nuts to fill the escarole (chicory) pizza, to flavour pork chops with meat sauce and meatballs with tomato sauce. Not to miss are the pork meat of Sant'Antonio Abate and in the nearby Nola you can taste the real Neapolitan fresh and dried sausage.
For over a century in Somma Vesuviana, the locals are famous for their traditional productions of cod and dried cod (dried cod, from stock fish, fish sticks). This tradition goes back to the second half of 800, when the peasants of Somma decided to sell their goods at the port of Naples, bartering with the fish that arrived by boat from Norway.
These volcanic soils give birth to famous grapes, already mentioned by Sallust and Plinio, and are evidence of a tradition that has ancient origins: Vesuvius Falanghina, Coda di Volpe and Piedirosso, which become the famous Lacryma Christi DOC.