Made in Italy. Ancient grains, short chain and artisan pasta al Mulino Val d'Orcia

Is’ Nice to know that there are (and more and more) young people like Amedeo, an enthusiast of agriculture, corn and its derivatives. In val d'Orcia, Headquartered in the beautiful countryside around Pienza, produces flours, pasta, bread, everything from ancient grains, While the fields come chickpeas, lentils, spelt and berseem clover. Amedeo, 27 year old just, He does it with a smile, with his right arm Sebastiano (26 years), conscious that in this corner of Tuscany, considered a long time ago a very productive and economically unattractive, There are great potential but we need to get busy, find the right way to pursue a passion and, with it, a craft, keeping alive the traditions, strong also great tourist inflows which are now one of the pillars of the local economy.

Family Grappi, led by Papa Luchino, is primarily made by farmers, working these lands for generations. It was Luchino, in 2006, to buy the mill and a mixer. Una avventura iniziata “quasi per gioco”, Amedeo tells, that as a student of agriculture was always with her feet firmly on the ground, and from an early age was involved in the markets of short chain to raise awareness, and sell, its products. A game, What started by Luchino, He became profession and passion for Amedeo over the years.
And it is precisely in the building that once housed the remittance of agricultural tools of grandparents sharecroppers that Amedeo decides to open the mill in 2013. The property is located along the via Francigena, housed in a Grange, adjacent to the ancient castle of Spedaletto (century XII), on the road between Pienza and Monticchiello, village of Pienza.
The Castle and those who once were stables and barns today are places of great charm, carefully restored so as not to disrupt the beauty of the ancient structure, and inside there are 4 different holiday cottages. Here guests can enjoy the specialties of the mill every morning at breakfast, or dinners prepared by staff. The farm provides all raw materials. Is’ organic since 1992, manages 100 hectares, of which 85 to arable crops, where they grow wheat, tender, spelt, oats and barley, in rotation with grain legumes like chickpeas, lentils, beans and berseem clover; Finally, 5 hectares of olive groves and vine.
Amedeo, simpaticamente soprannominato dagli amici il “Banderas della Val d’Orcia” (with a poster hung in the mill), decided to embark on this adventure and to stake everything on the old varieties: wheat (types and Abundance) and durum wheat like Senator Hats. Stone ground flours are and, by choice, is not produced flour of the type double zero, the most refined and low in nutrients. Slow processing allows you to preserve the organoleptic characteristics, avoiding oxidation of fat content in corn. Of course I bought all kinds of flours and I'll do my personal home tests with making bread with pasta.
From these organic flours, every week the mill gets about 500 kg of bronze-drawn pasta in nine sizes, both spelt both durum wheat, including the classic Tuscan pici, the lilies but also the paccheri and pens. All types of pasta are prepared using only spring water. The pulp production process is slow drying: 36 hours to pici, 22-24 hours for the pappardelle and noodles and 12-14 hours for short pasta shapes. Even here I had to buy both spelt and durum wheat pasta to put them to the test!
On Wednesdays and Saturdays here they produce breads from ancient grains grown, using spelt flour and durum wheat flour. For now, without the use of sourdough and it is perhaps this the next step to take to enhance the quality of these flours. In the mill they also sell local products: craft beers (kilometer zero and very short production chain), jams and cheeses selected from various manufacturers, But even breadsticks and biscotti made friends with the same flour Mill workshops.
Il Mulino val d'Orcia is already, in fact, a landmark for the agricultural sector of the area. Speciality shops, organic shops and typical products, restaurants, Hotel and a few luxury resorts are among customers. No product ends up in supermarkets because, to explain the value and importance of a diet conscious, Amedeo and family prefer direct contact with customers.
For the future, After introducing the line of baked goods (the bread and cookies and handmade breadsticks) and soups, It is thought to make dough of vegetables grown in the company. But there is another important goal for 2017: opening a restaurant in which to use any products: “Sarebbe l’ultimo passodice Amedeo “per chiudere davvero la filiera di trasformazione dei cereali: dal campo alla tavola”.

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