URBINO, Italy — The small square morsel reaches your lips with the aroma of sweet honey and almonds, and with the first bite of the chewy treat your mouth floods with flavors. But as the tastes awaken your pallet, something feels old and familiar, as if history calls you back one bite at a time.
That’s exactly what Daniela Storoni intended with her Rinascimento a Tavola, a line of packaged treats and meats offering consumers a rare glimpse into the lost art of Renaissance cooking. Her label can be found in specialty stores across the Marche.
Storoni, who jokes that she has been cooking since birth, actually stumbled into a career in cuisine en route to a degree in Renaissance art. It happened when she began searching to see how the artistic and intellectual awakening of the time impacted the daily life of the time. She quickly discovered in the Marche the Renaissance was not limited to paintings and sculptures, but reached even into the cuisine of the era.
“The idea was to see how in the daily life, in the banquets, this rebirth, this philosophical concept of the Renaissance, could somehow be transported in what was the banquet at a glance,” she said.
Urbino was one of the capitol cities of the Italian Renaissance, a place where the duke and his court would surround themselves with the greatest art, music, and rare spice to show off his power.
Storoni explains that the art of cooking and feasting originated in Italy and spread quickly throughout Europe. The banquets hosted by the nobility were not only about the food but about the people and the politics. Over the banquet tables, alliances were forged and demolished, often with bloody consequences. Party planners chose the menus, the decorations, the entertainment, hired the cooks, all to the taste and fashion dictated by the nobility.
So in a time of artistic and intellectual enlightenment, food was as much of an art as the paintings hanging on the walls.
See on 2012.inurbino.net