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Bread from Matera

When it comes to bread, Italy's know-how goes back centuries. From north to south, every town can boast its own traditional bread, the most famous of which includes that made in one of Italy's most beautiful regions, Basilicata: we're talking about bread from Matera.Fresh Bread from a Wood Burning OvenKnown for its ancient habitations literally set in stone, the sassi, and for its rupestrian churches, Matera is an undisputably fascinating city. Appreciated by tourists from all over the world, this town in historic Lucania is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. What makes Matera so captivating? Those that visit it immediately have the sensation of walking through a life-size Nativity scene. And it is not a coincidence that this "Second Bethlehem" was chosen for the making of such films as The Passion of the Christ

The particular bread from Matera has long been the city's symbol. Its form and unique taste are the fruit of ancient culture and tradition that still live on today. 

Ingredients e disciplinare
True Lucanian Pane di Matera IGP is obtained with 100% Lucanian milled semolina grain known as "Senatore Cappelli."
The strict IGP preparation procedures, implemented on the entire chain of production and guaranteeing absolute quality, ensures that grain is stored in thermal-ventilated silos, thus maintaining the grain's organoleptic properties unaltered. Among other things, the procedures call for the use of natural yeast that results from the maceration of grapes and figs in water, and for long fermentation of the dough (similarly to sourdough) in clay cisterns.

Characteristics and Curiosities
Besides the bread's wholsome goodness, what stands out are the genuineness of the raw ingredients, the artisan methods of making the bread, and the capacity to store and preserve the grains cultivated in Matera's hills and environs.
The bread's form reminds us of a tiny mountain range or chain of hills, much like the Murgia Materana, while its ingredients include the local grain, of course, and the local water. 
Given that the town's wood ovens were shared up until 1950, the families of Matera impressed their own sort of brand on the dough they made at home by using a wooden stamp. That way they could recognize it once baked. The stamps were traditionally made by traveling shepherds, and today many of them can be admired in the Domenico Ridola National Archaeological Museum of Matera.

Recipes
Perfectly delightful when consumed alone, the bread should contain a label from its protective consortium, Consorzio del Pane di Matera IGP when purchased.
It is often used in such dishes as ‘cialledda calda,’ a mixture of egg, bay leaves, garlic and olives on hot bread; and ‘cialledda fredda,’ which is moist bread with tomatoes and garlic.

Other Enogastronomic Products 
Bread is not the only thing Matera does well: all its products using its famous durum wheat are excellent, including the pasta. 
And several of its wines bear the D.O.C. Matera seal; they are produced with Aglianico, Sangiovese, Primitivo, Greco and Malvasia di Basilicata grapes.