Gianluigi Peduzzi of Rustichella d’Abruzzo works alongside a group of local farmers who cultivate farro of the local variety (known as farro vestino) over just 50 hectares between Penne and the Gran Sasso, the highest peak of the Apennines, an area partially protected by the Riserva Naturale Regionale Lago di Penne, a World Wildlife Fund reserve.
Farro thrives in this stony, well-drained soil—without the use of fertilizers.The yield of over 100 tons of farro of the local variety known as farro vestino is then used for producing the flour for making Rustichella d’Abruzzo farro pasta as well as farro polenta.
Prior to milling, the grains are sifted and sorted through an advanced selection process, separating the whole ones of the finest quality. Farro grains with their shiny reddish-brown color, pointy ends and very sharp texture, are processed for husking and pearling, removing the outer hard husk but leaving much of the bran intact.
The resulting pasta has a dark brown color and because of its lower gluten content, it is more fragile than conventional pasta. For best results, boil in abundant salted water and refrain from stirring during the first 30 seconds of cooking. Gently fold the pasta from then on, but avoid over-manipulating to avoid breakage. Farro pasta is ideal with olive oil based sauces using mushrooms, hearty vegetables or game.