Saturday, July 13 2024

Insalata di rinforzo is a typical side dish in the Neapolitan Christmas tradition, very tasty and rich in flavors and ingredients.

It is the most famous salad of boiled cauliflower; topped with black and green olives, pickled vegetables, gherkins, spring onions, pickled vegetables, salted anchovies, capers and the ever-present “papaccelle”; which are the small, round bell peppers from Campania!

A tasty and colorful Christmas salad that is a must on the Christmas Eve table!

With its rich characteristics, this delicious Neapolitan caponata reinforces the Christmas Eve fish dishes, which are considered “lean”!

And as an immovable tradition, day after day, it is “reinforced” by everything that will be consumed until New Year’s Eve!

That is why it is called “Reinforcement Salad.”

The more days go by, the better it gets, thanks to all the aromas and flavors coming together!

Like any traditional recipe, every family has its own version, with more or less ingredients.

The reinforcement salad recipe is very easy and very fast, which you can prepare well in advance and if you cannot find papaccelle because you are not from Campania, don’t worry!

You can replace them with pickled red and yellow peppers!




Ingredients for 6/8 people

  • 25 oz ofย  cauliflower
  • 1 jar of mixed pickled vegetables
  • 2/5 cup of black olives
  • 2/5 cup of green olives
  • 4-5 pickled cucumbers
  • some pickled small onions
  • 5-6 anchovy fillets
  • 2 sweet peppers (or half a jar of pickled peppers)
  • 3-4 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 3-4 tablespoons of white wine vinegar
  • salt


First, clean the cauliflower and cut only the florets.

Then boil for 10 minutes in boiling water, or steam.

Finally, drain and let cool.
Season with oil, vinegar, and salt.

Then add all ingredients, being careful to cut sweet or pickled peppers into strips if they are too large.

Mix well, place in a serving bowl and garnish with all the ingredients that make up your Neapolitan Christmas Salad!

Here is your Reinforcement Salad ready!

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