Navelli Chickpea

Italy

Abruzzo

Legumes

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Navelli Chickpea

The tiny medieval village of Navelli looks out over the plain of the same name, at the foot of the Gran Sasso. In October, the countryside turns purple thanks to the crocus flowers whose saffron is famous all over Italy. But another crop has also been essential to the community’s economy, history and subsistence: a local variety of chickpea.
The village still celebrates the legume with a festival at the end of August, during which the villagers and local growers try to outdo each other with local recipes like chickpea stew and chickpeas with saffron.
Navelli chickpeas are usually small, cream colored and smooth, but a few producers still grow a second type, smaller and rusty red in color, with a wrinkled surface. Historically the white chickpeas were sold while the red ones were kept for family consumption.
The chickpeas are grown between 700 and 800 meters above sea level in soil that is arid, light and sometimes stony, with little standing water. As an old saying goes, “Don’t plant chickpeas in black soil”: The plant would flourish in dark, fertile earth but produce few seeds.
The seeds are sown in the spring, between March and April, though sometimes sowing is delayed depending on the seasonal weather conditions. Every three or six years the chickpeas are rotated with wheat, barley, spelt and forage plants like alfalfa and sainfoin. The harvest takes place between the end of July and the end of August. In small plots, the plants are left to almost completely dry out, uprooted and collected in bundles known as mannelli and left to dry further in the fields, then threshed by hand. In larger fields, threshing machines are used.
The red chickpeas have a tougher skin, are more floury, have a stronger flavor and require longer cooking times, so they are best used in soup. One of the heartiest dishes of Abruzzian tradition is chickpea and chestnut soup, customarily served at the start of Christmas Eve dinner.

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Season

The harvest takes place between the end of July and the end of August.

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The Presidium was established to protect this rural tradition and to unite the few producers remaining in Navelli and the surrounding villages. The area has been suffering from depopulation for decades and the 2009 earthquake has only worsened the situation. Yields are around 10 to 15 quintals per hectare and only well-drained, sunny plots are used for the chickpeas.
The producers have set up an association and drafted a production protocol which guarantees the natural sustainability of the chickpea crop.
The aim is to promote the legume outside the local market and to revive its use in local restaurants, following the example of the Santo Stefano di Sessanio Lentil Presidium.

Production area
Navelli plain, L’Aquila province

Presidium supported by
Gal Gran Sasso Velino
Sandro Angelone
Navelli (Aq)
Via del Commercio, 53
Tel. +39 339 2806981
sandro.angelone@email.com

Tommaso Angelone
Navelli (Aq)
Via dei Mori, 5
Tel. +39 339 6223456
tommaso.angelone57@gmail-com

Tommaso Cantalini
Navelli (Aq)
Via del Commercio, 3
Tel. +39 338 3304194

Giuliana Di Luzio
Navelli (Aq)
Via Fontevecchia, 5
Tel. +39 338 5865607 / 339 7797235
giuliana.diluzio@gmail.com

Berardino Di Felice
Navelli (Aq)
Via Spiagge grandi, 26
Tel. +39 329 6121814
berardino.difelice@libero.it

Agnese Di Iorio
Civitaretenga (Aq)
Via Cavour, 3
Tel. +39 334 9038827
gianfranco.napoleone@alice.it

Mario Federico
Navelli (Aq)
Via Roma, 10
Tel. +39 339 2806981

Daniela Ippoliti
Navelli (Aq)
Via del Commercio, 43
Tel. 0862959418 / 3296121295

Maria Grazia Palmerio
Navelli (Aq)
Via del Commercio, 42
Tel. 0862959442

Alfonso Papaoli
Navelli (Aq)
Via Spiagge piccole, 2
Tel. 3479331731
info@papaolizafferano.com

Luigi Petrucci
Navelli (Aq)
Via Pereto, 11
Tel. 0862959132



Slow Food Presidium Coordinator
Giovanni Cialone
tel. +39 338 5861506
giovanni.cialone@gmail.com

Producers’ Presidium Coordinator
Alfonso Papaoli
tel. +39 347 9331731
info@papaolizafferano.com
The Presidium was established to protect this rural tradition and to unite the few producers remaining in Navelli and the surrounding villages. The area has been suffering from depopulation for decades and the 2009 earthquake has only worsened the situation. Yields are around 10 to 15 quintals per hectare and only well-drained, sunny plots are used for the chickpeas.
The producers have set up an association and drafted a production protocol which guarantees the natural sustainability of the chickpea crop.
The aim is to promote the legume outside the local market and to revive its use in local restaurants, following the example of the Santo Stefano di Sessanio Lentil Presidium.

Production area
Navelli plain, L’Aquila province

Presidium supported by
Gal Gran Sasso Velino
Sandro Angelone
Navelli (Aq)
Via del Commercio, 53
Tel. +39 339 2806981
sandro.angelone@email.com

Tommaso Angelone
Navelli (Aq)
Via dei Mori, 5
Tel. +39 339 6223456
tommaso.angelone57@gmail-com

Tommaso Cantalini
Navelli (Aq)
Via del Commercio, 3
Tel. +39 338 3304194

Giuliana Di Luzio
Navelli (Aq)
Via Fontevecchia, 5
Tel. +39 338 5865607 / 339 7797235
giuliana.diluzio@gmail.com

Berardino Di Felice
Navelli (Aq)
Via Spiagge grandi, 26
Tel. +39 329 6121814
berardino.difelice@libero.it

Agnese Di Iorio
Civitaretenga (Aq)
Via Cavour, 3
Tel. +39 334 9038827
gianfranco.napoleone@alice.it

Mario Federico
Navelli (Aq)
Via Roma, 10
Tel. +39 339 2806981

Daniela Ippoliti
Navelli (Aq)
Via del Commercio, 43
Tel. 0862959418 / 3296121295

Maria Grazia Palmerio
Navelli (Aq)
Via del Commercio, 42
Tel. 0862959442

Alfonso Papaoli
Navelli (Aq)
Via Spiagge piccole, 2
Tel. 3479331731
info@papaolizafferano.com

Luigi Petrucci
Navelli (Aq)
Via Pereto, 11
Tel. 0862959132



Slow Food Presidium Coordinator
Giovanni Cialone
tel. +39 338 5861506
giovanni.cialone@gmail.com

Producers’ Presidium Coordinator
Alfonso Papaoli
tel. +39 347 9331731
info@papaolizafferano.com

Territory

StateItaly
RegionAbruzzo

Other info

CategoriesLegumes