Stelle in Stalla: 64th fair of piemontese fassone beef

Tigliole (Asti) – if heavy storms hadn’t been part of the forecast, I’m sure a lot more people would’ve been circulating in the Langhe picking up crates of luscious, sweet apricots and then scurrying off to chow down on carne cruda at Stelle in Stalla (Stars in the Stable) this past Sunday. Despite the inclement weather, lunch was scheduled as part of the 64th cattle fair showcasing Piemonte’s prized “star” Fassone breed, but those in attendance barely filled half of the large tent. It poured!

Carne cruda alla piemontese is finely chopped/minced lean, raw, Fassone beef that needs nothing more than a drizzle of olive oil, a spritz of lemon, and s&p to taste. We aren’t big meat-eaters but when it comes to beef from Piemonte, that line of thinking gets the boot. Plates of carne cruda, vitello tonnato, agnolotti, and arrosto di vitello (veal roast) were part of a 22€ set menu (water included), and ended with bonèt (a kind of chocolate pudding).

I had also penciled in a visit to the 2nd Sagra dell’Albicocca in not-so-far-away Montaldo Roero to see if they might have something interesting on the menu, but when we got there lunch had been cancelled and market vendors were packing up. Fortunately for us, local grower Roberto Nada still had his beautiful display of apricots and after a nice chat, we left with some of the season’s crop. These should be wonderful in an apricot-lavender tarte tatin !

8 kilos of apricots

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4 thoughts on “Stelle in Stalla: 64th fair of piemontese fassone beef

  1. Nonna T

    We tried this fassone beef in a carne cruda in Asti two months ago. Verrrry good. I mentioned this to some Italian friends visiting from Piedmont. I guess my pronunciation was not very good. I did not stress the ‘ss’ of fassone enough. I am still a barbarian 🙂

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    1. Rowena Post author

      Barbarian or not ;), I’m glad you enjoyed it! I hope you were also able to try salsiccia di Bra which is just so wonderfully delicious. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.

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    1. Rowena Post author

      The apricot farmer that we spoke with claimed that apricots grown in Piemonte are better than those grown in the lower plains (I’m guessing Emilia-Romagna). I recently saw a program on apricots grown in Switzerland and the farmer noted that variabe weather actually does good for the trees.

      As for the rain…well, the dogs got to be carried to the car!

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