Kolomna Pastilà

Ark of taste
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Kolomna has always been a city famous for its orchards, so much so that in the gardens of the city one can find up to 130 apple trees from which people would collect great quantities of fruit. It is said that the Pastilà was born as the only way to avoid wasting apples by transforming them in to a sort of paste. Traditionally, apple puree was spread on a thin layer of fabric and left to dry under the sun. Following this method, starting from the sixteenth-seventeenth century, the Pastilà was prepared, initially consumed as a sauce accompanying main courses. The oldest recipes of Pastilà, found in some ancient texts, did not foresee the use of sugar and their use was not limited to the city of Kolomna. The oldest traceable recipe dates back to 1796 and is found both in the dictionary of Levshin and the ancient Russian text on ethics and home economics «Domostroj». The pastilà of Kolomna, known in all of Russia, is the most unique. There is no reliable data on who was the first to prepare it, but in 1735 a Russian trader called Shershavin founded the first factory of Pastilà. The preparation of Pastilà is a long process that requires extreme care. One must use sour apples, cook them (baked or in a stove), remove skins and seeds, make a puree and let it cool. Sour apples are often placed inside a hermetically sealed container together with bread crumbs and milk. A foam is then made by adding whipped egg whites and sugar. Once the puree turns white, it is transferred in to wooden containers and placed in an unlit oven (or stove) for two consecutive nights. In this manner the pastilà separates in to two different layers: the layer below remains denser and harder, while the top layer is softer. Fruits such as strawberries or raspberries can be placed in the top layer. Historically, the pastilà represented the emblem of the city and served as a homage offered upon the arrival of the Tsar and Empress. Legend narrates that in 1775 Catherine the Great came to Kolomna and the city paid homage to her with " bread, salt on a silver platter as well as fish and Pastilà…". In the course of history only three factories were set up for the production of Pastilà; the owner of the last factory, closed in 1917, was Chuprikov. From that year until 2009, the production of pastilà was completely abandoned

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Moscow oblast

Production area:Kolomna

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Cakes, pastries and sweets

Fruit, nuts and fruit preserves

Nominated by:Savkin Dmitry