Sicily has always been a wheat-rich region since ancient times. It’s even supposed since 3° millennium a.c. as testified by the finds of ancient daily life tools, like grindstones and pestles, found in Stentinello, a Neolithic village near Siracusa. The mythological tale of the kidnapping of Persefone, the daughter of the Goddess Cerere, concludes with the gift of wheat made by Cerere to the population, with the aim of ensuring her sustenance and the development of civilization.
The different wheat cultivations give the Sicilian landscape incredible colors, changing from one place to another, depending on the grain variety, the time and place of sowing
The selection of the Sicilian ancient grains varieties, the work of the Experimental Station of grain growing and the samples collection made by Ugo de Cillis that classifies wheat into durum and soft, give us the description of its main growing and biological properties.
The ancient grains grown in the past in Sicily, for a long time remained only our grandparents memories. Then, finally, some forward-looking growers renewed Sicilian ancient grains, selecting them grain by grain, with the use of innovative tools, before grinding them in the old mills in natural stone.
The flours produced today, unlike those of the past, are the synthesis of ancient gestures joined to the innovative technological instruments.
The ancient grains are usually processed with stone milling, producing a less refined flour, compared to that produced with modern wheat.
Among the most famous kinds of wheat we can find: Timilia or Tumminia, already used by the Greeks.