While for centuries beans constituted an alternative food to meat for the poor, today they have been re-appraised as the ingredient of important dishes and an essential part of a balanced diet. Presented at table often with 'Franciscan' simplicity, boiled and seasoned with sliced onion, or served with a hard-boiled egg or some cold cuts of salami, they may also inspire more elaborate dishes such as pasta e fasioi (pasta with beans), fasioi in tocio (stewed beans), risi e fasioi (rice with beans) or accompany vegetable dishes, meat, soups and fish.
The variety "Borlotto Nano Levada" has become a typical product of the community of Montana del Grappa, an interesting niche product among all the others of the marchlands around Treviso. The close bond between man and territory is characterized precisely in the bean which is one of the most typical products of the farming tradition in the Veneto region. The Confraternity of the bean has accredited at a regional level the name "Levada", to be used all over the area while waiting for the PGI appellation.
The Borlotto Nano Levada bean is a leguminous plant which grows vertically, with long flattened pods of 15-17 centimetres, of a speckled red colour on a creamy white background. The product is particularly appreciated because it is cultivated with limited parasiticidal treatment.
Every year in Covolo, a little hamlet near Pederobba, on the second and third Sundays of September the Bean Festival is held, where these products can be appreciated in detail.
The Fasol de Lago is a typical 'cannellino' type of bean, locally known by the names of "Mama Alta" or "Bonel". It is produced in the municipalities ofCison Valmarino, Follina, Miane,Revine Lago and Tarzo. It is sought-after especially for its delicate flavour and soft skin and is used to prepare soups and minestrone as well as the traditional dishes.
The Fasol de Lago has been officially recognized as a "Traditional Agricultural Food Product" by the region of Veneto.
Photo by Comune di Pederobba