About Apulia

LOCATION

APLUVIA Cooking is strictly related to southern Italy, especially to the region of Puglia. Our brand promotes consumer awareness of the product origin and quality. We also believe in a transparent price-policy, which assures our clients to obtain quality products at a fair price. APLUVIA Cooking products are not only Made in Italy, but they are completely made of raw materials from Puglia, one of the most important Italian regions in the agriculture sector as well as the wine and food sector. The word Puglia derives etymologically from the latin word Apluvia, which means “land without rain”. Puglia is defined as the “heel of the peninsula” and it has a typical Mediterranean climate; the region is almost entirely washed by the sea, the land is warmed by the sun all year around, the air is softened by the sea breeze and the rainfall is limited mainly to the winter months. The soil is rich of minerals and, together with the mild climate, there are the ideal conditions for growing fruits and vegetables of a high nutritional value. The region produces almost 35% of the Italian olive oil, 27,5% of the durum wheat and it is the major producer of the San Marzano tomato (the number one choice for many famous international chefs). The role of the cuisine in southern Italy is recognized by the UNESCO intangible world heritage award.

CUISINE

In Puglia and generally in Southern Italy, the cuisine plays a key role. People like to eat good quality food, often together with a nice glass of local wine, chatting at the table. Being surrounded by the sea and having mite climate the whole year, Puglia has traditionally been a region with excellent production of wine, extra virgin olive oil, fruits, vegetables, wheat and seafood. The cuisine is truly Mediterranean; the best extra virgin olive oil is used almost for everything (even for pastries), pasta is made with the best durum wheat, very sweet and juicy tomatoes are used for salads or excellent sauces. Legumes, such as fava beans, lentils or chickpeas, are eaten very often. The cuisine has ancient peasant traditions and has been handed down from mother to daughter for centuries. Puglia is also a heaven for those who love good wines. The best wines are obtained from Primitivo di Manduria, Negroamaro, Nero di Troia and Verdeca grapes from ancient vineyards.

BRIEF HISTORY OF APULIA

It is very difficult to reassume such a long lasting and intense history as the Apulian one, there are even different opinions for the origin of the name “Puglia”. Some say that the name comes from “a-pluvia” (land without rain), others “lapudia” (land inhabited by the Iapigi people), or land without mountains. It seems that the original meaning is never to be found and shall be a mystery forever.
The region was already inhabited by “civilized” populations of Illyrian origin in 3000 B.C., but there are even older findings, as “l’uomo di Altamura” (the man of Altamura, a Homo Neanderthalensis skeleton), which has been dated between 128.000 and 187.000 years ago.
In the region’s millenary history, it has been invaded or ruled by several different populations as Greeks, Romans, Spartans, Laconians, Heruls, Goths, Byzantines, Lombards, Normans, the Papacy and the Catholic Church, Swabians, Aragons, Sicilians, the Kingdom of Naples, French, Spaniards, Turks, Austrians and the Napoleonic empire.
The Templar Knights departed from its coasts to reach the Holy Land of Jerusalem, during the Crusades. One of the world’s most important saints, San Nicola (the original inspiration for the Santa Claus stories), is buried in the Basilica of Bari, where his bones were brought by three sailors from Myra in 1087.
By a referendum in October 1860, the Apulian people confirmed their will to be part of the new united Kingdom of Italy, which later became the Italian Republic.

GEOGRAPHY

Situated in the South-eastern end of the Italian peninsula, Puglia covers over 19,000 square kilometers (7,336 sq mi) of broad plains and low-lying hills. The central area of the region is occupied by the Murge, a vast karst plateau and the Itria Valley. The only mountainous areas, the Gargano promontory and the Monti Dauni, do not exceed 1,161 m (Monte Cornacchia) and are situated in northern Puglia.
Puglia is a very dry region. Its few rivers are torrential and the Tavoliere delle Puglie, a tableland at the foot of the Gargano promontory, is one of the largest and agriculturally most productive plains in Italy. Elsewhere, rainwater permeates the limestone bedrock to form underground watercourses that resurface near the coast. Groundwater is therefore abundant, and there are many caves and sinkholes (the caves in Castellana Grotte are particularly spectacular and visited by lots of tourists every day).
During millions of years, the dissolvent action of the rain on the limestone ground has transformed the surface soil to the famous Apulian “terra rossa” (the red soil), which is particularly rich of minerals. Due to the considerable fertility of the soil, its consistence is a fundamental factor for agriculture diversity and quality, as well as for the economical and civil development of the entire population.

AGRICULTURE

Between the sixth and the fourth millennium A.C., the practice of agriculture reaches Puglia and Italy, for the first time, from the Middle East (see the archeological site of Passo di Corvo). Agriculture did not expand on the entire territory because of the numerous wars and the fact that most people were safe only inside the city walls or in the protected agricultural sites like the “Masserie fortificate” (which you can still see today on the territory, some of them abandoned, others renovated for modern agriculture, farm holidays or private residences).
Then since the 1860’s, pushed by hunger and armed only with the will to improve his conditions, the Apulian farmer did, despite of indescribable sacrifices, transform wild and arid soils full of stones, to rich and producing agricultural lands. He freed the land from the superficial lime stones and used them to build houses (ex.: “Trulli” houses) and raise walls to mark the boundaries and limit the erosive action of the waters. Millions of grape, olive, almond, and other trees have been planted realizing a gigantic work.
Today, the agricultural sector in Puglia has one of the highest number of operators (approx. 10% of the total working-force). The production volumes and the variety of cultivation are high and Puglia is on first place in Italy for agricultural surface used for permanent tree cultivation. The region produces big quantities of olives, grapes, almonds, durum wheat flour, tomatoes, red and green peppers, hot peppers, salads, artichokes, fennels and other vegetables. Despite the big productions, it is still possible to find many small local productions of varieties of vegetables which are not much diffused like “cipolla di Acquaviva” (big red onion), “cipolla di Zapponeta” (sweet red onion, due to soil very rich of limestone), “lampascioni” (bitter small onions), etc.


Recipes

Riso, patate e cozze

Ingredients for 4 people – 1 kg of mussels preferably from the Adriatic Sea – 400g of rice – 5 or 6 medium size potatoes – 3 medium size onions – 50g grated pecorino cheese – 1 clove of garlic – 1 sprig of parsely – celery – APLUVIA Cooking – Organic -Green Line extra … Continue reading Riso, patate e cozze

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Spaghetti all’arrabbiata

Ingredients for 4 people – 320g of APLUVIA Cooking – Long pasta -Golden Line spaghetti – 700g of APLUVIA Cooking – Red Line tomato passata – 2 chilli peppers cut into small pieces – 3 cloves of garlic – APLUVIA Cooking – 100% Italian- Green Line extra virgin olive oil – pepper and a pinch … Continue reading Spaghetti all’arrabbiata

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