The existence of “Orta” can be dated back to the twelfth century. In fact, the place name is mentioned for the first time in a document dated 1101, and later in an 1157 contract. It was under the Swabians, however, that the settlement enjoyed its most glorious period.
Emperor Frederick II, the puer Apuliae notoriously enamoured of Apulia and above all of Capitanata, actually chose this location for his residence and for production ends. He built his palacium here, identifying a defensa (the wooded area where only he could hunt), and creating a farm and a marescallia (to rear horses) to exploit the territory for agricultural purposes. Orta was also the place where Manfred issued his Datum Orte in 1263, founding the town of Manfredonia.
In 1611, the Jesuits acquired the site and established the “Casa d’Orta”, remaining there until 1767, when they were expelled from the Kingdom of Naples. In 1774, Orta became one of the five Royal Sites; after a series of ups and downs, it was declared an independent municipality in 1806, then renamed in 1862, acquiring its current name of Orta Nova.
Sadly, the old church of Santa Maria delle Grazie, erected by the Jesuits in 1620, was lost, as was Palazzo Arcieri, which surrounded the ancient Jesuit grange and had a stone inscription relating to the palaciumbuilt by Frederick II. Nevertheless, Orta Nova does still have its former Jesuit building, with its small bell chamber and gable, constructed over the ruins of the imperial residence, later becoming in turn the seat of the vice-secretary of the Regia Dogana delle Pecore (royal sheep custom-house), the town hall, a Carabinieri barracks, a school and the magistrate’s court; it is now the town library and home to various cultural associations. There are also several interesting 19th century private residences, such as Palazzo Campese, Mascitelli and Traisci.
Festa patronale, il 13 giugno, in onore di sant’Antonio
da Padova. Ogni anno poi, il 15 agosto, una “compagnia” di fedeli si reca in pellegrinaggio a piedi a Stornara,
nel cuore della notte, per la festa di san Rocco.
|ORECCHIETTE CON CIME DI RAPA
Ingredienti per 4 persone
400 g di orecchiette, 1 kg di cime di rapa, olio, sale.
Mettere a cuocere in abbondante acqua salata le orecchiette, e dopo qualche minuto anche le cime di rapa. Scolare il tutto e condire con olio crudo.
Ingredienti per 4 persone
1 kg di farina, un lievito di birra,
15 cl d’olio, 10 cl di vino bianco,
20 g di sale fino, 100 g di semi
Impastare tutti gli ingredienti e
formare una palla consistente;
lasciare riposare per mezz’ora,
poi realizzare i taralli e farli
lievitare per 20 minuti.
Immergerli in acqua bollente
finché non vengono a galla,
scolarli e infornarli a 180° per
circa 25 minuti.
The primary use of the 10,000 hectares here is for cultivating grapes, and then there are vegetables (artichokes, tomatoes, broccoli), cereals and, lastly, olives. In 1984, Orta Nova was awarded DOC labelling for its red and rosé wine (from Sangiovese and Uva di Troia varietals). Typical dishes include cingoli di granarso (a type of pasta also called cicatelli di granarso, from Cerignola); talli (courgette stalks, leaves and small fruit, boiled and added to pasta, then dressed with sauce and dry ricotta); orecchiette e cime di rapa (orecchiette pasta with turnip tops); troccoli (pasta made at home using a grooved rolling pin); turcenille(barbecued lamb pluck rolls). The Easter speciality is the squarcella cake(made with flour, eggs and sugar, iced and coated with hundreds and thousands). The Christmas treat is called cartellate (squares of dough, twisted and fried, then dipped in mulled wine).
Dove mangiare -
Al Boccon Divino, Corso Aldo Moro, 115 - Tel. 0885.781475
Il Triangolo, S.P. 81, km 1.235 - Tel. 0885.784165
Locanda delle Vigne, Via Cialdini - Tel. 338.6879929
Dove Dormire -
Herdonia Hotel, S.S. 16 – Tel. 0885.792956