Tuscan Bread

Pane Toscano PDO is a type of bread typical of the Tuscany region, recognized under the brand name of protected origin. What distinguishes it the most is the fact of being completely devoid of salt and with a slightly sour taste of the crumb.

The production of insipid bread, also called silly bread or sciapo, is also widespread in other areas of Italy, including Umbria, Tuscia Viterbese and Marche.

Tradition has it that the lack of salt is due to a dispute of the twelfth century between the Pisans and the Florentines. On the other hand, in the Umbrian area the legend of a similar clash between the Pope and the Perugians is widespread, even if a research on bread without salt in Perugia seems to disprove these legends. [1]

In the seventeenth canto of the Paradise of the Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri, messer Cacciaguida prophesied the future exile of the Tuscan poet, describing the anguish of those who must eat the bread of others, produced with salt. A first written testimony on the production of “silly” bread, ie without salt, was already provided in the sixteenth century by Pierandrea Mattioli. A 1765 writing by Saverio Manetti reports news about the Tuscan tradition of not using salt during the preparation of this particular type of bread, in addition to the use of natural yeast, called formento in Tuscany, made from sourdough pasta that was stored in the so-called cupboard in the middle of the flour. There is also evidence of the centrality, in the diet of the Tuscan sharecroppers of the nineteenth century, of bread prepared without salt. This choice was the natural consequence of the use of salt, given its high price, mainly for the preservation of pork. In the twentieth century, Giuseppe Negri praised the labors of the baker, referring to the “insipid” “Tuscan” thread. The following writers have narrated the goodness and peculiarity of this silly bread, with a crispy crust and a soft but consistent crumb.

With the European directive 2016/58 / EU, published in the Official Journal of the European Union on March 4th of the same year, the Tuscan bread has obtained the DOP recognition.

Wild Boar Sausage

The wild boar has returned to constitute in the last two decades, the main source of game meat in the Tuscan territory, from which it was almost completely gone. The very short maturation makes the best of the meat of wild game, while the addition of pork allows the maintenance of adequate and pleasant softness. It was traditionally prepared during the hunting season of the region.

Truffle Rules

“Who wants to collect truffles must sow oak acorns”
… so the wise French peasants of Périgord, the present Dordogne, describe the very long-running enterprise of the collection of these precious tubers.

WHITE TRUFFLE In fact, only after 12-15 years from sowing, it is possible to collect at the foot of the oaks the first truffles, which grow in groups under their roots.
But, undoubtedly, the seekers venture into the woods in search of wild truffles, booty much richer in satisfaction and commitment.

In Italy, many regions donate these tubers, different in quality and culinary traditions.
In Piedmont, the Langhe and in particular the area around Alba, the Monferrato, the Alessandrino and the Po hills are the kingdom of the white truffle, with an intense, characteristic aroma reminiscent of methane, vaguely spicy and garlic.
Umbria, instead, with Norcia, Spoleto and Monte Subasio, produces the precious black truffle, with a not too pungent perfume and delicate flavor.

BLACK SCORZONE

Finally, in Lombardy, the forests of the Lariano Triangle host the summer black truffle, called scorzone, with a less intense aroma and lower cost.
In how many delicious ways it is possible to prepare and use truffles, it is now known, but, thanks to the experimentation and attention of some chefs, it has come to magical and surprising combinations.
Acacia honey enriched with pieces of white truffle is the perfect accompaniment to a selection of spicy and aged cheeses.
The caviar or perlage of truffle, obtained from the juice of the precious black truffle, by direct extraction during cooking, subjected to a spherification process, able to create small, precious and shiny pearls, is excellent with a tuna tuna or an entrecote beef.
Of hard-boiled eggs, after having lightly beaten the shell to cause cracks, left for 48 hours in a glass jar with the fresh summer black truffle skins, in a well-closed container, they will turn into a wonderful appetizer.

The white truffle of oak or oak goes well with a salad of boletus porcini or a carpaccio of raw meat, but, in the farms of the Langhe tell that the perfect union is with the eggs, broken in the leftovers of bagna caoda and cooked while the heat decreases.
Prominent and heavenly is the fine black truffle foie gras with Armagnac reduction, a dish that embraces all the senses and gives an intense feeling of pure pleasure.
Audacious and exceptional is the risotto with buffalo ricotta, anchovy sauce with red prawns and black summer truffle, tangible and wonderful proof of the possibility of combining truffles with fish preparations.
Sea bass fillets, for a more delicate taste, or mackerel, for a more determined result, will stand out with scorzone truffle slivers.
What about a salad of fresh scampi embellished with a vinaigrette of oil, lemon and white truffle?
The combinations are endless and the continuous culinary research leads more and more to original preparations, which respect the genuineness of the ingredients, but which enhance their potential.
Even freshwater fish, little considered or little known, thanks to the truffle, is becoming the protagonist of a cultural and culinary renaissance.
Examples are the perca pike wrapped in a thin layer of potatoes, accompanied by a soft pumpkin cream or the fillets of burbot flame, sprinkled at the end of cooking with a glass of excellent grappa ripened and flambéed. Both recipes reach their maximum flavor with scorzone black truffle slivers at the end of their preparation.

PILLS OF HISTORY …

The history of the truffle is very old. Pliny the Elder, in the Naturalis Historia, explained its origin by attributing it to a thunderbolt hurled by Jupiter near an oak tree and in the Middle Ages, its aroma was considered a “fifth essence”, able to provoke ecstatic effects in men.
In his political activities, Count Camillo Benso di Cavour used the truffle as a diplomatic means, Lord Byron kept it on his desk so that his scent aroused his creativity, Alexandre Dumas called him the Sancta Santorum of the table.
An admirer asked Rossini, who had defined the truffle “the Mozart of mushrooms”, if he had ever cried in his life: “Yes”, he replied, “one evening, by boat, on Lake Como. We were about to have dinner and I was handling a wonderful turkey stuffed with truffles. That time I cried just taste: the turkey has escaped me and fell into the lake! “.
The anecdotes starring the hidden king of the earth, protected by oaks, poplars, willows and lime trees are truly infinite and demonstrate how, splendid and exquisite, embellishes any dish you entrust.

Gran Toscano Cow Cheese

Two prestigious stages such as the Central Market in Florence, the first place visited in Florence with the record of three million appearances in the year 2017 and the “Chicago Gourmet 2018” at Millenium Park are the locations where the expected event of the Tuscan autumn tradition that in this edition will also be enriched by interesting collateral initiatives.

Sunday, October 7 in Scarperia the Special Guest will be the prestigious company “Giusto Manetti Battiloro spa” that carries on the activity of the Battiloro since 1600, passing through 15 generations and becoming today world leader in the production of precious gold leaf, also used for Gourmet decorations.
At 5 pm the Cooking Master Luisanna Messeri will award the winners of the Food Blogger Contest, the national competition entitled: “Latti da mangiare 4.0”, where the Chefs of the Social Network will compete with their best recipes.
At 6 pm there will be the official presentation of the “Palagiaccio Pallacanestro Femminile Firenze” team that will play the “B” Series Women’s Basketball Championship this year.

In the evocative setting of the “Palazzo dei Vicari”, as usual, Sunday 7 October the most important moment will be at 18.30, when the First Citizen of Scarperia and San Piero will cut the first form of Grand Mugello Ubaldino production 2017, using the renowned cutting blades hand-forged by Scarperia Cutlers.
The Grand Mugello Ubaldino of the Historical Farm Palagiaccio is a semi-cooked cheese weighing 6-7 kg, produced exclusively for the Palagiaccio with raw milk from farm cows and owes its name to the fact that it requires at least one year of maturing and refinement in the “Ubaldine Caves” located deep under the battlemented tower of the Palagiaccio.

This characteristic place was the residence of “Ser Ugolino da Senni”, which as the Medieval History recalls, was fearless Knight and illustrious member of the noble family of the Ubaldini mentioned by Dante in the Divine Comedy.
In a prestigious site rich in history such as the Palazzo dei Vicari, some of the Mugello artisan excellences will be hosted, which are in strong synergy, like the knives of the Scarperiesi Knifemakers and the niche products of the historic Palagiaccio Farm.
Scarperia, one of the most beautiful villages in Italy, still has some extraordinary uniqueness and the event of October 7th will be an important occasion to strengthen the process of Internationalization of Made in Italy and in this case especially of the Ma