OUR PASTA: more than organic, from ancient and local grains
At the Self-Sufficiency Farm we only produce food which is good both for our health and the environment!
Ancient grains are grains varieties that are largely unchanged over the last several hundred years, that is to say that they have not been modified by man in order to increase their productivity. One of the most known example in Italy is the wheat variety “Senatore Cappelli”, but there are many others depending on the region of production. Other examples are: Saragolla, Tumminia, Einkorn wheat, Gentil Rosso, Verna, Rieti, etc.
Ancient grains are usually processed through stone grinders, so the flour is much less refined than the one that has undergone modern processes. The result is very similar to a semi-refined flour.
Modifications on modern wheat have made it richer in gluten, with all disadvantages that this entails for our body. On the contrary, ancient grains have a more balanced levels of starch and gluten since they contain a lower percentage of this notorious protein.
Durum wheat Senatore Cappelli is one of the few ancient grains which is still in production and it is an ancestor of modern durum wheat. Before World War II, Senatore Cappelli was defined as “Chosen Race” and it was named after Senator Raffaele Cappelli, supporter and promoter of new wheat varieties with an agrarian reform which led to the distinction between durum and soft wheat.
Buying ancient grains means defending the biodiversity of our territory or of other Italian regions. Indeed, since these grains have higher costs of production and lower productivity, they risk to disappear and this would be a real shame.
Likewise, it is important to keep them alive and prosperous for their historical and cultural value. These grains used to be an important source of sustenance for ancient populations and they varied from region to region depending on the environmental conditions…definitely a huge heritage to preserve!
We decided to sow durum wheat SENATORE CAPPELLI in order to produce flour and pasta.
Durum wheat Senatore Cappelli has kept its original genetic structure because it has not undergone any induced mutagenesis through X-rays, Y-rays and gamma rays of radioactive cobalt, as it happened to modern durum grain varieties used especially in intensive and large-scale farming.
Senatore Cappelli has large and black awns which are bristle-like appendages typical of grasses. When the wheat is ripe, the view of the fields coloured in yellow and black is quite picturesque.
In plain fields Senatore Cappelli can reach up to 1,80 meters of height, more than double than common wheat. Nevertheless, it is very resistant to bending thanks to its robustness. At the Farm, given the climatic conditions and the absence of fertilizers, Senatore Cappelli hardly reaches 1,30 meters of height, but this does not cause any problem during the threshing process. The production is around 1500 kg per hectare, which is in line with other ancient grains and spelt.
Compared to modern grains, the quality is unmistakable. It contains higher levels of lipids, amino acids, vitamins and minerals, as well as being easier to digest.
The wheat Senatore Cappelli produced at the Farm is converted into semolina which is then sold in 1-kg bags or directly transformed into pasta.
At the moment we do not have seeds or flour available for selling, but only pasta which can be purchased on Macrolibrarsi website or in our store in Cesena.
Another wheat we cultivate at the Farm is EMMER WHEAT.
Compared to other modern grains, Emmer wheat is much easier to digest and with a lower gluten content which makes it adapt for those who suffer from a light food intolerance to white refined flour. It contains more levels of proteins, amino acids, vitamins and minerals.
At the Farm, Emmer wheat is cultivated between 700 and 800 m.a.s.l. on uncontaminated fields that had not been cultivated in the previous 10 years. Also, the fields border the woods, creating a natural continuum with wild nature.
The result is 100% organic wheat as the fields have never been fertilized or undergone any kind of treatment.
Emmer wheat is stone ground in the local mill “Pransani” which has been family-run for 3 generations now and it only mills ancient and organic grains. Mr. Pransani is recognised to be one of the main experts on ancient grains and he is obsessive in the way he aims to get the maximum quality from his flours.
The resulting semolina contains the germ, the noblest part of the grain, while in industrial production it is usually separated to be sold to cosmetic industry which pays a lot of money for it.
The pasta is then artisanally produced by “La Romagnola” a small pasta factory that for the last 25 years has researched and focused on the quality of raw materials and the ethical value of the farms that produce them.
The pasta we obtain by following these few but essential principles is healthy and very tasty!
Emmer wheat pasta of the Self-Sufficiency Farm is a special product created with care by following precise rules and preserving the land and the surrounding territory.
You can purchase Emmer wheat pasta of the Self-Sufficiency Farm on Macrolibrarsi website or in our store in Cesena.