Nizza Monferrato Cardoon is a key ingredient in traditional Piedmontese cuisine. It is known as “Nizza
Monferrato Hunchback Cardoon” and is protected under the Slow Food presidium. It belongs to the Cynara
genus, in the Asteraceae family, and is grown in Nizza Monferrato, the surrounding municipal areas and in
the sandy soils along the Belbo river. It is called “hunchback” because of the cultivation technique used:
the plant is partially buried under the soil to help it survive the harsh winter. Then, as it tries to reach the
light, the plant curves upwards, taking on its typical hunchback shape. Thanks to this treatment, the stem
becomes white, is tenderer and has a delicate taste.