When we think of Italy and food, PASTA is probably the first thing that pops into the mind. There are numerous fine pasta makers in Italy. But there are very few “ESTATE” pasta producers where the wheat is grown by the maker, harvested and milled by the maker, and then the pasta produced by the same maker. One such producer is MANCINI PASTIFICIO AGRICOLO, where everything is done by the same company. Mancini grows wheat, stores and mills it, and extrudes through bronze dies and slowly dries its pasta in their plant in the middle of a wheat field on Italy’s Adriatic side in the MARCHE region. Obviously, it is pasta in a limited production, hence not available all over. It is truly lovely pasta with an intriguing wheat scent before it’s cooked and a delicious wheat flavor when it is. I would suggest that you try Mancini Pasta just to have the experience of an estate production which is unique.
Using what is called Good Agricultural Practices, Mancini Pasta is able to grow wheat on about 400 hectares of land. Three special durum wheat varieties, selected for the area, and the ancient line of hard wheat called KHORASAN, or Triticum turgidum var.Turanicum–“I Turanici”--are grown. This latter wheat has very low gluten and the pasta is the product of two strains of it, #17 and #38.
Another unusual thing about Pasta Mancini is that they hold the unmilled wheat in cold storage, which allows them to store the grains without the use of pesticides or antifermentatives. The land planted to Mancini wheat is in 28 fields, surrounding the pasta plant.
Not all pasta coming from Italy is made from Italian wheat. Most pasta is made from Canadian, American, and in the old days, Ukrainian wheat, coming from the Black Sea. In fact, the Republic of Genoa had outposts in what they called Romanìa Genovese. This was in the 14th century and continued/continues up to today. (As an aside, to those customers who have used our Ardoino olive oil: the Ardoino family were shippers of Crimean wheat to pasta factories in Imperia for a hundred years before getting out of wheat and into the oil business.)
MANCINI PASTA merits your attention. Corti Brothers has the following cuts: bucatini, mezze maniche, linguine, spaghettini . Mancini Pasta is $7.69 the 500g bag.
The “I TURANICI” pasta has fewer cuts and is recommended for its low gluten content. It is not gluten free, just low in gluten due to the nature of this old hard wheat variety. This flour is milled using a stone mill and is certified organic. Turanici is available in the following cuts: penne lisci, sedani 20 righe (10 ridges outside and 10 inside this cut), spaghetti. Mancini “I Turanici” are $8.79 the 500g bag.