I am pleased to announce a wonderful day-long event: Natura, Arte, e Sapori [Nature, Art, and Flavors] on the 10th of March 2019, a Sunday.
Typically in March, the village above my home hosts the festival of the chestnut pancake [sagra del neccio]. We have loads of chestnut trees [Castagna] in the hills of Valleriana and the fall harvest time features the Sagra delle Frugiate [festival of roasted chestnuts]. One can often buy the flour and other products from chestnuts at these events. They are fun!
The neccio [neh-choh] is traditionally cooked by heating many flat round stones [about 1 inch thick and maybe 8-10 inches in diameter] in the fire. Then one makes a stack... stone, castagna leaf, ladle on some batter [just the chestnut flour, water, and perhaps a wee bit of olive oil], leaf, stone, leaf, batter, leaf, stone, etc. The heat from the stone cooks the pancake in a short time.
Nowadays, some people use a long-hinged iron paddle. Open the long arms, and place the batter on the inside of the round end, near the hinge. Close it up and the hot iron cooks the pancake on both sides.
The neccio is then served with ricotta or another cheese or Nutella. Rolled up inside. Delicious!
So, then, my friend Danilo Giusti, is offering a tour of three of our ten castled villages of Valleriana that morning. The villages are Aramo, Castelvecchio, and ending up in San Quirico for the sagra that starts at 2 p.m. Meet up with him at 9 a.m. in Pescia, our nearest large town with train and bus station.
They will pass by La Pieve Ristorante in Castelvecchio, run by my friend Lara Matteucci and her parents for over 25 years now. She asked me to put on a solo art show and demonstrate, as well.
So, we have a fun day planned for those who would like to get a taste of Tuscany!
Look at the other pages on this blog to learn more about the area, including where to stay, where to eat, what to do :
Kelly Borsheim, artist