The artichoke of Montelupone
grows in the province of Macerata, in the hilly territory between the valleys of the Chienti and Potenza rivers, it is also known as "scarciofunu" or "scarciofinu".
It has a smaller dimension than the average and has no internal or external hair plugs; it is of a deep purple color. It's characteristic of the same-name Municipality; it is a late variety and differs in two ecotypes: one is unripe, has got more serrated leaves, it is collected at the end of March and it is more productive; the other one has less jagged leaves, the dimension of the smaller plant and it is collected later producing less.
When the plant is young, achieves to produce ten heads (inflorescences of the artichoke), but after a few years goes down to just four. Owing to this rapid decline in production and the lowest yield of the average (5.5 tons per hectare, unlike, for example, the “Romanesco” one that reaches 10 tons), the artichoke of Montelupone is only locally known and it is distributed in a limited area, in spite of its high quality.
However, thanks to the flavourful and very sweet taste, it is the protagonist of many typical dishes such as “tagliatelle” with artichokes, fried artichokes and artichokes “giudìa” way. Historically, in Montelupone, the first larger heads, are cooked in a pan with whole fennel, fresh garlic leaves, various local herbs, olive oil, salt and white wine, while smaller flower heads are blanched and then put under oil.
The harvest is gradual and takes place in April. In the country of Montelupone, farmers grow the two ecotypes of this variety of artichoke mainly for family consumption, thus preserving the local biodiversity.
The producers of the Presidium have joined together in the "Manufacturers of the Artichoke of Montelupone " that has adopted a specification in line with the philosophy of Slow Food
presidia, providing for the prohibition of chemical fertilizers and synthetic herbicides, hormones and other growth promoters.
Between an artichoke cultivation and the next, it is also necessary to replenish the fertility of the soil, cultivating biocide plants such as legumes for at least two years.
Production Area: The hilly territory of the municipality of Montelupone, about 400 meters above sea level
Presidium supported by: Municipality of Montelupone, Cooperative Credit Bank of Recanati and Colmurano.
Tourist Office Montelupone
Via Regina Margherita, 1
62010 Montelupone (MC)
Tel. and fax: +39 0733 226419