Peppers of Polizzi Generosa

Slow Food Presidium

Polizzi Generosa has just over 3000 inhabitants and over 40 churches. A stone town perched in the heart of Madonie, with an extraordinary wealth of culture, architectural heritage (churches and palaces) and products of the earth, such as badda bean (Slow Food Presidium), hazelnuts and pipiddu.

Pipiddu (as it’s called locally) is a small bell pepper, more or less regular conical shape and skin of an intense green color that turns to red when ripe, but above all, it grows upwards: its berry, instead of hanging below the leaves, extends upwards.

It is possible to reconstruct the history of this traditional bell pepper only thanks to oral testimonies: it is said that seasonal hazelnut pickers of Polizzi Generosa were rewarded with tasty interludes based on homemade bread seasoned with olives, pecorino cheese and roasted pipiddi.

The cultivation requires great patience: each plant must be accompanied by a brace because the weight of the berries would force it to bend.
The sowing takes place in April, followed by the transplanting in open field between the end of May and June, the flowering begins in July and lasts until October. The flowers are white and solitary carried by a sturdy peduncle facing upwards.
Harvesting is gradual and very long: it begins in July and lasts until November.

It is eaten raw, in salads, but the most typical local preparation is grilled peppers dressed with extra-virgin olive oil, basil and wine vinegar. The Presidium is also recovering some traditional recipes (for bell pepper sauce or peppers in oil) through the involvement of the village elders.

polizzi generosa pepper

Polizzi Generosa Pepper

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The decline of horticulture in the agricultural area of Polizzi Generosa is related to the orography of the land, which makes the activity of local farmers almost heroic.
An increasingly homologated market and the diffusion of hybrid seeds, more productive and luxuriant, have also reduced more and more the interest for local productions, which risk to be abandoned.

Thanks to a group of farmers, many of them very young and all of them convinced of the importance of the agricultural resources of the territory, a path for the recovery of this variety has been started: the older farmers have provided the seeds and a horticultural nurseryman produces the seedlings on behalf of the producers.
Moreover, a small but very efficient common laboratory allows the production of processed peppers, but also of other local products: peppers in oil, caponata, canned beans.

 

Producers

Roberta Billitteri, Polizzi Generosa (Pa), Contrada Fiumesecco, Tel. +39 340 5624176, ro.billitteri@libero.it

Francesca D’Ippolito, Polizzi Generosa (Pa), Contrada Fiumesecco, Tel. +39 388 8599127, sausa.mario@alice.it

Francesco Giampapa, Polizzi Generosa (Pa), Contrada Mantonica, Tel. +39 320 688335, dott.giampapafrancesco@live.it

Grazia Sandra Invidiata, Polizzi Generosa (Pa), Contrada Chiaretta, Tel. +39 328 4723440,
inv.sandra@inwind.it

Francesco Mangialino, Polizzi Generosa (Pa), Via Garibaldi 104, Tel. +39 328 4841567, fra.mangialino@libero.it
– Referente dei produttori del Presidio

Fabio Maria Montagnino, Polizzi Generosa (Pa), Contrada S. Nicola, Tel. +39 335 7564744, fmontagnino@gmail.com

Maria Concetta Muratore, Polizzi Generosa (Pa), Località Cuca – Mulini, Tel. +39 0921 688176, agriturismocuca@alice.it

Antonino Sausa, Polizzi Generosa (Pa), Contrada Suvarito, Tel. +39 328 0389249, nino.sausa@libero.it

Last modified: 23 Oct 2021
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