Enna Piacentinu

Italy

Sicily

Milk and milk products

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Enna Piacentinu

Around the Erei mountains and the Dittaino Valley, in the Sicilian province of Enna, the springs are rainy and the summers humid. The rich variety of plants (sulla, vetch, rosemary, wild fennel and many others typical of the Mediterranean maquis) growing between 400 and 800 meters above sea level makes this one of the parts of the island with the highest number of sheep farms. The native Sicilian sheep breeds raised in these hills include Comisana, Pinzirita and Valle del Belice.
Since ancient times, their milk has been flavored with locally grown saffron and turned into Piacentinu, a sheep’s milk cheese, named after the dialect word for “which is liked.” Over the centuries, different anecdotes have attached themselves to the cheese. According to legend, in the 11th century, Ruggero I, Count of Altavilla, cured his wife Adelasia’s depression by asking local cheesemakers to add a pinch of saffron to their sheep’s cheese.
Produced in nine municipalities in the province of Enna, the cheese has a compact texture and a unique appearance. The use of saffron gives the cheese a distinctive yellow color, and the paste is studded with whole black peppercorns, which are soaked in hot water the evening before the cheese is made. The processing technique, which involves the addition of hot water to the curd and a careful use of salt, make this one of Sicily’s least “aggressive” cheeses, with a more “European” style than many others from the island.
After being aged for around 60 days, Enna Piacentinu develops a delicate fragrance and aromatic flavor, with a gentle sweetness from the saffron.

Season

Enna Piacentinu is available throughout the year.

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At the moment, only three producers make Enna Piacentinu using raw milk, natural rennet and saffron grown within the nine municipalities. Current production cannot meet the high demand for the cheese. The Presidium wants this historic cheese to be re-evaluated and to involve other cheesemakers in the production area in order to increase the quantity produced and to promote it outside the province.

Production area
Aidone, Assoro, Barrafranca, Calascibetta, Enna, Piazza Armerina, Pietraperzia, Valguarnera and Villarosa municipalities, Enna province

Presidium supported by
Sicily Regional Authority’s Agricultural and Food Department
Casalgismondo
Di Maria Rita D’Amico
Aidone (En)
Strada Provinciale 103, Km 13
Tel +39 335 5252807 - 339 7147196
info@casalgismondo.it

Pietro Di Venti
Calascibetta (En)
Contrada Tresaudo
Tel. +39 338 8454255
casearidiventi@alice.it

Il Cavalcatore
Famiglia Nicoletti
Assoro (En)
Contrada Cavalcatore
Tel. +39 0935 667255
ilcavalcatore@virgilio.it

Giuseppe Spitale
Enna
Via Mercato Sant’Antonio, 34
Tel. +39 0935 30260
334 9877914
aziendaagricolaspitale@virgilio.it

Caseificio Valvo
Enna Bassa
Contrada Salerno
Tel. +39 0935 541669
328 9743136
info@caseificiovalvo.it
Slow Food Presidium Producers’ Coordinator
Gaetano Nicoletti
Tel. +39 0935 667255
ilcavalcatore@virgilio.it

Slow Food Presidium Coordinator
Stefania Mancini Alaimo
Tel. +39 333 9218021
mancinialaimo@hotmail.com

At the moment, only three producers make Enna Piacentinu using raw milk, natural rennet and saffron grown within the nine municipalities. Current production cannot meet the high demand for the cheese. The Presidium wants this historic cheese to be re-evaluated and to involve other cheesemakers in the production area in order to increase the quantity produced and to promote it outside the province.

Production area
Aidone, Assoro, Barrafranca, Calascibetta, Enna, Piazza Armerina, Pietraperzia, Valguarnera and Villarosa municipalities, Enna province

Presidium supported by
Sicily Regional Authority’s Agricultural and Food Department
Casalgismondo
Di Maria Rita D’Amico
Aidone (En)
Strada Provinciale 103, Km 13
Tel +39 335 5252807 - 339 7147196
info@casalgismondo.it

Pietro Di Venti
Calascibetta (En)
Contrada Tresaudo
Tel. +39 338 8454255
casearidiventi@alice.it

Il Cavalcatore
Famiglia Nicoletti
Assoro (En)
Contrada Cavalcatore
Tel. +39 0935 667255
ilcavalcatore@virgilio.it

Giuseppe Spitale
Enna
Via Mercato Sant’Antonio, 34
Tel. +39 0935 30260
334 9877914
aziendaagricolaspitale@virgilio.it

Caseificio Valvo
Enna Bassa
Contrada Salerno
Tel. +39 0935 541669
328 9743136
info@caseificiovalvo.it
Slow Food Presidium Producers’ Coordinator
Gaetano Nicoletti
Tel. +39 0935 667255
ilcavalcatore@virgilio.it

Slow Food Presidium Coordinator
Stefania Mancini Alaimo
Tel. +39 333 9218021
mancinialaimo@hotmail.com