SMALL-SIZE CHESTNUTS? THEY BECOME FLOUR
The smaller sizes of chestnuts? They will no longer go to waste, but will become flour. A new supply chain is born in Valle Susa to respond to a need of various chestnut growers which they had been complaining about for many years a market that pays little attention to small-sized, underpaid chestnuts and marrons . A new model of sustainability and development for the territory which can certainly then be emulated in other areas of Piedmont and Italy.
The leader of the initiative is the Valsusa Mill which, after various projects launched involving the farmers of the Valley to return to cultivating abandoned mountain and pre-mountain areas with ancient varieties of grains, is now looking at the chestnut fruit, involving, also in this case, local producers of chestnuts and marrons.
« Let's go back to doing something that is in the history of the Susa Valley and of Italy. Producing flour with small calibers, a flour that was made 150 years ago – explains Massimiliano Spigolon, soul of Mulino Valsusa, which is based in a 19th century mill recovered in Bruzolo, the only ancient mill in the Valley that has returned to operation - It will be stone ground: it was born based on a specific need expressed by the territory ."
It was necessary to do it study, deepen and rediscover with the owners of the chestnut groves methods for drying and peeling chestnuts , thus starting a new transformation chain.
The producers will give to the Mill that it will transform all in flour: the idea is to protect the territory as much as possible and, therefore, chestnuts from other areas will not be "accepted" , creating a 100 percent Valle Susa product. An ancient but also new product, full of aromas and flavours, with a typical hazelnut colour. Having disappeared from Italian cuisines for decades, chestnut flour is rich in fibre, proteins and vitamins, helps the intestinal bacterial flora and fights cholesterol. It is used to prepare various cakes and biscuits, the famous castagnaccio, but also crepes, fresh pasta and gnocchi, fritters and pancakes, creams, sandwiches.
The goal is obviously extend and grow the supply chain , involving more producers in the Valley.