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From the “Chestnut flour of the Garagnana DOP” comes the sign of quality of the Serchio valley

From the “Chestnut flour of the Garagnana DOP” comes the sign of quality of the Serchio valley

When the subject of a conversation is flour, rarely does it bring to mind pictures of chestnuts – a thought association which, on the other hand, is common in the province of Lucca.

In fact the Garfagnana and the Media Valle of the river Serchio, thanks to a landscape which favours the growth of the chestnut tree (in the past called “the bread tree” because its fruits saved entire mountain populations from hunger, have made this product their calling card.

So the farina di neccio Garfagnana D.O.P. (chestnut flour) brings with it, apart from the naturalness and goodness of the product, further significance linked to the land of its origin, so that we can taste the value of tradition and culture of its production, which in, living memory, has remained unchanged for centuries.

Its colour can vary from a fine white to dark ivory; the taste sweet and characterised by a slightly bitter aftertaste; the aroma is that of chestnuts and the consistency is fine to the touch and on the palate.

The unique quality of the Garfagnana D.O.P. chestnut flour is released upon contact with the taste buds, be it in sweet polenta, castagnaccio, necci, biscuits or other sweets, and is born of a complex production process which is regulated by a strict discipline.

logo1After eliminating any fruits which are not intact, the chestnuts are laid out and dried in the metato on wooden slats for at least 40 days.

Then they are subjected to a beating/cleaning and selection process to eliminate the fruits with insects in, and those which don’t represent the optimum characteristics.

The softening starts in mills with stone grindstones(weighing 5 tonnes) and the flour obtained is then bagged in quantities of 500 g, 1 kg and 12 kg.

Finally the new flour, according to the rules of production, can come out only from the 1st of December each year.

The Garfagnana DOP chestnut flour is nevertheless available all year round, and its sales start directly in companies, in specialist food shops, in grocers’ shops and in bakeries.