Fagiolo Cannellino di Atina PDO is a dry bean belonging to the Phaseulus vulgaris L. species, deriving from the local Cannellino di Atina ecotype
The production area of Fagiolo Cannellino di Atina PDO is within the territory of the municipalities of Atina, Villa Latina, Picinisco, Casalvieri, Casalattico and Gallinaro in the Province of Frosinone, in the Lazio region.
Sowing is carried out by hand or with a seeding machine between June 15th and July 15th, with an investment of 70-90 kg of seeds per hectare. The first irrigation is extremely important for the success of the cultivation; they wait for each plant to visually wilt before proceeding with the watering (two hours after sunset); this is to prevent the plants from growing excessively. Every 6-10 days, water from the River Melfa, the Mollarino torrent and their tributaries are used to irrigate by means of flooding, spray or drip irrigation. The Fagiolo Cannellino di Atina PDO cultivations must not be fertilised. The plants are harvested between September 10th and October 30th and have to be dried within 45 days in sheltered or open areas; this is followed by threshing. Finally, the impurities and defected beans are eliminated by manual or mechanical selection.
Appearance and Flavour
Fagiolo Cannellino di Atina PDO is kidney shaped, slightly elliptic and flattened, with a thin outer pod and an off-white colour; it is 0.9 to 1.4 cm long and 0.5 to 0.6 cm wide. After cooking it is tender and deliquescent on the palate.
Fagiolo Cannellino di Atina PDO was already being defined by Domenico Demarco as a “very good quality product” in 1811, while he was demonstrating its importance for local society. Cirelli also supplied important data on production in Il Regno delle due Sicilie, 1853. This bean was used by farming families, who cooked it in the pignata (a local cooking pot) with a bit of oil, as a main course. But the beans were not only destined to be sold to families; it was also tradition to offer them as a prestigious gift to friends and relatives, as confirmed by registrations in the Mastri books (local registers). From an economic viewpoint, the cultivation of Fagiolo Cannellino di Atina PDO has represented one of the largest sources of income in the valley and its designation has now become part of common and business language, as well as the focal point of conventions and press releases.
Fagiolo Cannellino di Atina PDO has to be stored in a cool, dry place to best preserve its specific properties. Once opened, it is advisable to store the beans in food jars with a watertight cap, protected from light and heat sources; in summer they should be kept in the fridge. Fagiolo Cannellino di Atina PDO is consumed after cooking and does not need to be soaked beforehand. It is the basic ingredient of many local recipes, such as the white bean-based pappafuocchie, with extra virgin olive oil, flour, water, salt, garlic, onion, celery, tomato sauce and chilli pepper, or the easier faffocchi e fagioli, made with beans, flour, water, salt, extra virgin olive oil, garlic and chili pepper.
The product is marketed as Fagiolo Cannellino di Atina PDO. They are sold vacuum-packed, in bags of 250 g to 5 kg and trays of 250 g to 3 kg. The legume can also be sold frozen in the above mentioned packaging.
Fagiolo Cannellino di Atina PDO boasts high tenderness and deliquescence on the palate, thanks to the climate and soil composition which characterise the production area.