The green gold of Etna, one of the main economic resources of the territory. Sicily is the only Italian region where pistachios are produced and Bronte, with its three thousand hectares, represents the main area of cultivation. Essential for this production is the temperate climate of the island, the soil of Etna and also the tradition handed down from father to son.
It has a typical emerald green colour and is characterized by organileptic qualities that make it unique all over the world with a unique and particular taste and aroma, sweet and delicate that the fruits produced elsewhere do not have.
Bronte pistachio from Sicilyis apprecieted not only in Italy but also in foreign markets, also thank to its adaptability in cooking. Its use has no limits: it’s ideal in all sweet and savoury recipes, from first courses to meat. It’s also widely used in the bakery industry and we advise you to try pistachio ice cream: the real one should be as light green as possible, preferably without those colours that give it the “fluorescent” colour.
Bronte is the capital of Pistachio. And it is precisely in the place of production that this fruit with its unique characteristics is enhanced. In fact, in the last weekend of September in the historic center of the city is set up the Bronte Pistachio Festival: over 100 thousand visitors are drawn every year in the streets of the historic center to taste all those local products that are enriched by the use of green gold. You can then taste (and buy) pistachio pesto, cream, cakes or ice cream, arancini and even pistachio coffee. In other words, the pistachio from Bronte in all its aspects!
Over the years, Bronte pistachio has been threatened by imports of much lower quality. In 2009, after the transitional national protection of 2001 and the establishment of the consortium for the protection of 2004, it obtained the European recognition of PDO product. The Protected Designation of Origin concerns a production area, between 300 and 900 meters above sea level, which falls in the territories of Bronte, Adrano and Biancavilla.
The fruit is harvested in September and is marketed throughout the year in different forms: Tignosella (dry pistachio not shelled, the brontesi call it “babbalucella”), peeled (shelled and deprived of the endocarp), grain, flour, sticks, sliced or pistachio paste.
The slow food projects were created to support small local productions that are in danger of disappearing, to enhance territories and recover ancient crafts and processing techniques with the aim of saving from extinction varieties of vegetables and fruit. In 2000, the slow food project of the pistachio of Bronte was born.
This protection provides that the pistachio is produced on lava soil at an altitude of between 400 and 900 meters, is not irrigated or fertilized, the fruit must have a purplish color on the outside and emerald green inside with an average length of 2 cm.