Cooking with Valdesina: Plandre

Hello kids!
Are you ready to come back with me into the kitchen and prepare a typical recipe from Waldensian Valleys?
After learning how to cook the Frichioulin of flowers and a special walnuts cake, today I’d like to show you how to cook a salty plate… but as tasty as the others: let’s cook the “Plandre”, which are fried leaves of borage!

Borage (borago officinalis) takes its name from the Latin word “borra”, which means “made of rough wool” due to the hairy peel that covers its stems and leaves.

Just like the Frichioulin, which were acacia and elderberry flowers fried in a sweet batter, also today we are going to fry our ingredients (so ask your moms and dads for help!) because in the past this was the most common way to make delicious every little treasure offered by the woods or by the home vegetable gardens to the very poor diet of people from the mountains…

Borage used to be cultivated, just like it is today, in the corners of the gardens ‘cause it needs very little space… even if it has plenty of foliage and blooms.

It is not by chance that I show you this recipe right in this days, ‘cause now it’s time when borage plants are flourished and the leaves (that can be used as filling for ravioli, boiled or mixed in
an omelette) become too hard to be eaten: but once nothing could be wasted, and that’s how people used to cook those big leaves!

cold water
oil for frying
borage leaves

Break an egg, add a spoon of flour and a pinch of salt, mix together and pour in the mixture a little cold water until the batter is fluid and without clumps. Heat up well the oil into a frying pan. Immerse the leaves of borage, holding them from the peduncle, in the batter and then gently dip them in the oil until they get golden and crunchy.
Serve immediately… but be careful not to burn your tongue!

In the same way you can fry sage or mint leaves, but also pumpkins and zucchini flowers!

Do you want to read the tale in Italian ?