The herb pie of Lunigiana
Taste and Flavour of the genuine tradition
In the rural areas, this wonderful dish is still prepared in its original version in the spring, using twenty or so different wild herbs: borage, nettles, bramble tops, primroses, violets, hop, clematis tops, wild greens, wild fennel, etc.
The version produced using finely chopped and sometimes salt-cured “prized” greens (beet tops, onions, borage, leeks, etc.) is available all year round.
Use of more or less of one vegetable (for example the leek, which traditionally dominates in the Christmas Eve version) gives the pie different flavours at different times of the year; it is a highly variable dish, changing with the seasonal availability of the ingredients and the cook’s imagination.
When the pie is cooked in the old manner, in cast-iron pans, using chestnut leaves instead of oil to keep the batter from sticking, the aromas and taste of this specialty are indescribable, and exquisite.