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FOOD AND WINE

Cartoceto Olive Oil

Over the years, time and history have shown the hills just outside Fano to be particularly suited the growing of olives. The high number of olive presses still operating in the area hark back to days gone by. The first official records of olive oil production in this area date from the period of the Papal States when these inland hills were among the best known olive areas, prized even by the religious authorities. At that time the ownership of olive groves was an indication of the relative power and standing of each family. Olive oil was a measure of prosperity and its production was a key factor in the economy of each village. The frantoio was not just a place for pressing olives to extract the oil but also a meeting place and centre of village social life, a place for discussing life and politics and concluding business deals.
At Cartoceto olive growing has always been a characteristic feature of the landscape. Here, olive presses are still in operation and their excellent quality extra virgin olive oil is renowned at international level.
The beneficial qualities of a good olive oil are well known. Among other things, it protects the body by neutralising its uncharged molecules, it balances the body from the nutritional point of view, withstands frying temperature better than other oils, aids digestion and assists the body to absorb calcium. The olive oil from Cartoceto has been shown to have all of the qualities usually found in extra virgin olive oil and its unmistakable flavour makes even a simple slice of toasted bread irresistible.

Bruschetta with olive oil

How to prepare:

Toast several slices of wholemeal bread lightly on both sides, rub them with a clove of garlic, sprinkle with a few drops of extra-virgin olive oil and a pinch of salt.
This is a simple dish, ideal as a starter for rustic dinners, and it should be eaten nice and hot.

Stoccafisso al frantoio

Oven baked dried cod cooked with olive oil fresh from the press

How to prepare:
Cut the dried cod into small pieces, place them in a bowl and add salt, pepper, chilli pepper, parsley and finely chopped garlic. Add olive oil and mix well. Peel and chop the potatoes and place them in another bowl, adding salt, pepper, parsley and chopped garlic. Add olive oil and mix well. Cut the tomatoes in half and cover them with a mixture of bread crumbs, parsley, garlic, salt and pepper and then sprinkle olive oil over them. Take a pan with a well fitting lid and line it with grease-proof paper, then build up alternate layers of dried cod and potatoes and a final layer of tomatoes. Add olive oil, white wine and water until the last layer of potatoes is covered. Cook in the oven, keeping the pan tightly closed.
Cooking time: approximately two hours.