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Bitto is produced exclusively from milk drawn in mountain pastures in the province of Sondrio and some neighbouring municipalities in the Alta Valle Brembana [Upper Brembana Valley] and in the province of Lecco. The processing technique and the name Bitto, ‘Bitu’, meaning perennial, date back to the Celts. The cheese is produced during the period when the cows are taken up to the summer alpine pastures, from 1 June to 30 September.


Bitto is produced with fresh-drawn whole cow’s milk, with a maximum of 10% goat’s milk added. The cows, from which the milk is drawn, graze mainly on grass on alpine pastures in the designated production area. The milk is curdled at a temperature ranging from 48° to 52°C. Maturing must last at least 70 days and starts in the alpine dairies. Bitto has a smooth, cylindrical shape, with flat top and bottom surfaces and is 30-50 cm in diameter. The round is 8-12 cm high, with concave sides and sharp edges. The weight varies between anything from 8 to 25 kg. The white- to straw-coloured paste is firm with sparse eyes the size of a bird’s. Bitto is sweet, delicately flavoured, redolent of alpine scents and acquires a stronger flavour as it matures. The cheese may mature for up to 10 years, becoming a prized delicacy in the world of cheese and can be perfectly matched with a fine glass of red DOCG Valtellina wine.


Pancakes stuffed with spinach and Bitto cheese

For the pancakes
• 40 g of buckwheat flour
• 40 g of white flour
• 1dl of milk
• 2 eggs
• salt and nutmeg For the stuffing
• 50 g stale bread
• 200 g of Bitto cheese
• 1 dl of milk
• 1 dl of cream
• 200 g of spinach
• Salt and pepper
• butter

Fold the flour into the milk, and then add the eggs, salt and nutmeg. Allow the mixture to set for 20 minutes. Blanch the spinach in boiling water for five minutes, cool and squeeze delicately. Put in a bowl with the bread crumbs, 150 grams of roughly cut Bitto cheese, the milk and the cream. Mix the ingredients, adding a pinch of salt and pepper. Prepare the pancakes, taking care to make them not too thin. Spread them with the stuffing, roll them up and cut them diagonally into equal-sized pieces. Place the pieces in a casserole dish and, if you wish, garnish each piece with a cube of Bitto cheese. Heat in the oven for 10-12 minutes Decorate with a drizzle of melted butter.