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Mario Fongo, a bakery in the Italian town Rocchetta Tanaro in Piedmont, turns out long, crunchy breadsticks stretched by hand, pulled one by one to almost a foot long. It’s a traditional technique the family bakery has practiced since it opened in 1945. Made with only a few ingredients -- Italian wheat, organic extra virgin olive oil, yeast, malt, and salt -- the crispy breadsticks or grissini, are remarkably light, airy, and fresh tasting. There’s another version made with corn flour that gives them a slight texture and golden color. Snack on the sticks or add them to a platter of cured meats with olives. The family also makes another specialty: Lingue di Suocera or Mother-in-Law’s Tongues, a crusty, uncommonly long flatbread in several flavors, including rosemary and Parmesan ($8.90 to $10.90). The "tongues” are good to top with salted fishes, smoked salmon, or to use instead of bread; shorter ones ($6.90) are appealing for a cheese plate. Ignore the sarcastic name. Available at Eataly, Prudential Center, 800 Boylston St., Boston , 617-807-7300, or at www.gourmetimportshop.com.


Ann Trieger Kurland can be reached at anntrieger@gmail.com.