The most common Italian nougat torrone is white nougat made with honey and beaten egg. The word nougat was first mentioned in Cristoforo di Messisbugo’s work in the 16th century. This is one of the most complex and that’s why the most interesting Christmas sweets in Italy. The origins of other Italian Christmas sweets such as panettone and pandoro are known. However, the origin of nougat is disputable.
It is not easy to present the origin and history of this Christmas sweet in an order. This Christmas cake has various formulas and recipes. It can be soft or hard. It can be chocolate or white. However, its 4 common denominators include egg white, honey, sugar and almonds.
Let’s see the origin and history of nougat.
The Roman Dessert
The ancient nougat was popular in the Sannio area. Romans used to make this sweet with almonds honey and egg whites. Sellers selling nougat in the area of Benevento are known as cupetari. Honey with dried fruit was used in making a lot of other Roman sweets. Some people trace their origin to China. However, their claims are weak.
Arabic or Spanish Origins
The tradition of Benevento is passed through Montefalcone di Val Fortore, Santa Croce del Sannio and San Marco dei Cavoti. People living in these towns produce a type of nougat which is white and crumbly, white and soft, white but covered in chocolate. The area of Sannio was a part of the Bourbon domain. A special nougat was produced for Neapolitan Royals and the Pope. The link between cupedia/torrone/cupeta and southern Italy dates back to Spanish or Arabic domain. It is difficult to say whether credit of introducing to Italy should be given to Arabs or Spanish. However, if it originated in the region of Iberian; it must be brought in Spain by the Arabs. People were informed that nougat was a stimulating food good for health.
A doctor from Cordoba described it as a healthy mixture of sugar, almonds, honey and various spices. A version of nougat can be found in all countries that were once ruled by the Arabs. Africans used to make with small black dates and very dark honey. In the west of Sicily, nougat is called cubbaita and in the east, it is known as giuggiulena.
France can also be the place of origin of nougat in 1260. It is said that Carlo D’Angiò’s cook brought nougat to Italy. Made from almonds and honey, it became popular in Southern Italy. In the 18th century, it reached Rome.
The Cremona Origins
Notoriously, Cremona is the home of nougat. The date of the marriage between Bianca Maria Visconti and Francesco Sforza and the date of the birth of nougat coincides: October 25, 1441. On the occasion of the wedding, a dessert was served and that dessert was very similar to Arab nougat. However, they added egg white to it. In honor of the city’s bell tower, Torrazzo of Cremona, it was given the name torrone. In 1543 Cremona nougat was in the news for the first time when the municipality bought and donated to the Milanesi. Its popularity increased in the nineteenth century.
Why do we eat nougat at Christmas?
It has something to do with the cultivation of almonds. Almonds are harvested at the end of the summer. In addition to this, during the winter, there was not much work in the fields. So, peasants were confectioners as well. The sale of nougat is increased at Christmas time.
So, this is the information we have about the origin of Italian nougat torrone. You can find easy Italian nougat torrone recipes online. You must try.
Everything You Need to Know About Italian Truffles
Italian food is a divine combination of delicious flavors and recipes. Italians and people all over across the board enjoy the irresistible experience of traditional Italian dishes to satisfy their taste buds with the flavors and fusion of spices and herbs. Authentic Italian recipes have a lot of vegetables along with various variety of cheese through which they make the food nutritious, low carb, and healthy.
Italian food is now engrossing foodies all over the globe with their mouthwatering recipes. But you need to know more about Italian food, we all know that cheese is considered as the main ingredient to Italian cuisine, but there is one more magical spice known as Truffle which is used in many traditional dishes.
Now you must be thinking what exactly is a Truffle and how can you use it? Don’t worry! In this article, we are breaking down everything you need to know about Truffles. Happy Reading!
What are Truffles?
Truffles are basically edible fungi majorly used as a spice in Italian cuisine. It’s a natural wild product with a pungent taste that will give a shot of happiness to your taste buds.
They are also known as the “Diamond of Kitchen”. Why? Because of the magical earthy and aromatic ingredients. Also, truffles give a delightful sight to the representation of numerous Italian dishes and make them aesthetically pleasing.
The size of a truffle is like a strawberry or of an apple, it may vary. Moreover, there are various types of truffles. The most highly valued in Italy are black and white ones.
Truffles grow on the decomposing organic matter though the symbiotic relation of roots with trees. They also grow in the roots of various trees and are usually harvested with the help of trained dogs as they can smell underneath the layers of ground.
Are Truffles similar to Mushrooms?
A certain confusion between truffles and mushrooms occurs in mind that they both are same. But it’s not like that, they aren’t the same. Although both are edible fungi. Mushrooms grow above the ground whereas, truffles grow underneath the ground with the roots of specific trees. Both have odd features, taste and methods of using so they are not considered as same as they look like.
How To Use Truffles?
There are more than several types of truffles. Additionally, oil is also originated from the truffles. Truffles are used in many products like sea salt and butter, it is also sliced along with honey. Most commonly used truffles in Italy are black and white ones.
A truffle cannot be boiled, fried or baked. It can be sprinkled on scrambled eggs, salads, baked potato or can be sliced in pasta, risotto, and the most famous one burratacheesewithtruffles.
Cost Of Truffles
Truffles are a bit expensive as they are hard to grow and are most likely to grow under the oak, hazel, and poplar trees. A specific kind of atmosphere is required for the growth of truffles. Also, they grow very slowly and are available for a very short season.
Dogs are specially trained to sniff out the truffles from the ground. But nowadays, truffles are cultivated in many regions of the USA. They are easily available at local and online stores in the raw and cooked form and are used in a variety of meals with the help of the authentic Italian trufflesrecipes like a burrata house which is severing the premium quality of truffles all across the USA. One can easily buyonlineItaliantrufflesthrough them.
Health Benefits Of Truffles
- Truffles are a high source of protein and fibre.
- They are considered as a high antioxidant which reduces inflammation.
- Truffles are also used as an antibacterial medicine.
- Truffles can be very easily added to the daily diet.