Le Castagne del Prete (Priest’Chestnuts): our specialty
Le Castagne del Prete, which tradition attributes to the culinary skills of Irpinia (a Campania region territory) priests, are a typical product of our land. Are produced from top quality chestnuts selected by size, the process is handmade and is conducted with full respect for tradition. There are three main phases in which splits the production process: the drying and the subsequent selection of the best chestnuts, roasting and the so called "bath" or rehydration. Each phase has a relevant role in conferring to the Castagne del Prete its renowned sensory characteristics.
Drying takes place in ancient buildings called "gratali" constantly heated, for more than ten days, by the heat produced from the chestnut wood combustion. This step is essential to drastically reduce the water content in chestnuts. The slow heating produced by the fire below gives the characteristic smoky flavor and caramel color to the finished product.
The phase of "roasting", which takes place in special ovens, has the dual purpose to give to the chestnut a still stronger taste on one side, to enhance the aromatic component acquired during drying process and to provide the result to the next stage of bath., on the other.
The roasted chestnuts and selected again are immersed in water, for short intervals, during seven days, in the phase defined rehydration or bath. The process stops when the amount of absorbed water is such as to confer the right smoothness, aroma and taste. The conservation in the ATM ensures the health and security all along the shelf-life.