The “finocchetti gallicchiesi”, salted round crackers, are prepared by mixing wheat flour, salt, olive oil, fennel and yeast.
The result is a dough that stretches and is handworked to create the famous salted cookies according to the forms of an eight or of a drop. The biscuits are boiled, allowed to dry and cooked again in a wood oven. They are eaten in company, the elderly dip them in wine after a meal and these crackers are always present on the table of the couple that get married in Gallicchio.
Until a few years ago in Gallicchio (PZ), on the occasion of marriages, the preparation of the biscuits was a veritable feast that lasted more than a week and involved all the women of the family. Now the Finocchietti Gallicchiesi travels the world inside the cases of Lucans living far away.
Enza Ierardi and Michela Sanchirico, mother and daughter, are the renewer of the local tradition of anks to the comimmitment of their family. Enzahad managed for more than twenty years a bar and a little food store in the village, when Gallicchio still had 1200 inhabitants. “Within a decade, however, the inhabitants of the village were cut in half,” she says. “More and more “gallicchiesi”, the inhabitants of Galliccho, continued to leave the country seeking for better opportunities for their lives. Enza thought that she should find a new business. The oven of the country that let the housewives bake their own cookies for their families in the early hours of the morning had closed. “…and then we decided to make one ofone of the traditions of Gallicchio a business”, Enza says.
She bet on the recovering of the tradition and won, with the help of her daughter, Michela, a graduate in Economics Banking in Macerata, where she had started to work. The new business has allowed her to return to Gallicchio. “Life far from Basilicata was not for me. I missed Gallicchio, my family, my places and sharing my life with my loved ones. The lure was too strong. “Michela tells us.
Now Michela and Enza work side by side in the family biscuit factory which is located in the heart of the country. “Specialties Gallicchiesi” have a all-female management. The main product is represented by the famous fennel biscuits typical of Gallicchio, processed by hand and cooked in a wood oven carefully following the tradition. Using natural ingredients of the highest quality and sourced locally, from oil to the flour derived from wheat Carosella, limited quantities are sold directly in local stores and now even in some stores in Milan. This opening enabled the company to stand out on the market soon. “The tradition is increasingly a winning weapon for investing in the future.” Now the “Specialities Gallicchiesi” are not only sold in small local shops. They follow the trajectories of those who live in different Italian cities and depart from the village bringing the biscuits with them, along with the flavors of Lucania, as a tasty fragment of a renewed tradition.