Sardinian Wild Capers - Selargino
Selargini capers are a traditional Sardinian food product.
Capers are the budding flowers of a perennial plant that grows spontaneously among the limestone-rich rocks. The most widespread species of Caper in the Mediterranean - and therefore in Sardinia - is the "spiny" which is characterized by its fragrant and showy flowers. The plant grows in arid and semi-arid climates and blooms between May and September; the caper is harvested early in the day and at sunset.
Origins: the first news on the cultivation of the caper plant in the Selargius area dates back to the early 1800s when this fruit was used for therapeutic power. But it was only in 1850 that the production of the caper began to grow in size and importance by the family of Domenico Dentoni, mayor of the city of Selargius who promoted the intensive development of this cultivation and the use of both herbal and food products. And so it was that in the poor harvest years of grapes, wheat and olives it was precisely the capers producers and traders that kept the local Selargino market active.
Processing and use: the production and transformation of capers has remained unchanged over time, in fact the methods are always the same, handed down for generations. The use of wine vinegar derives from the ancient wine tradition of the territory of Selargius, Monserrato and Quartucciu while the salt came from the nearby salt pans. Capers are sold in bulk or packaged in glass or plastic containers in vinegar or in salt.
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