RE-DISCOVERING VENICE THROUGH COFFEE AND SPICES
The food and drinks in the Venice in our times is one part of the whole food story. And who remembers that the riches and Venice were built on trading luxury foods ? That the incredibly decorated palaces, not just those lining the Grand Canal, were paid for by trading spices ?
Often, Venice isn’t even known for particular accomplishments in food and cooking. And sometimes, our visitors are so taken in by the sights of the city that they don’t give any particular attention to the food. In such an case, you are missing the heart and soul of Venice … In Roses and Spices, La Venessiana’s Food Journal,
Even if we explore food trends in Venice in a conscious manner, what we usually find in Venice today is just the tip of the iceberg. Food in Venice, since the 10th century, can be classified in three categories: based on herbs, blossoms and spices.
In our times, the food you as a visitor eat in Venice is mostly based on the ancient culture of cucina povera, simple food made from local ingredients and flavored with herbs. This is the simple yet excellent food Venice is best known for today. You can still taste it at the bacari, the wine bars, but also in the luxury restaurants at large. It’s a cuisine made from Lagoon ingredients, vegetables, fish and fruit.
Yet, there’s a different side which has been largely forgotten, all those dishes belonging to the luxury cuisine of the past. Food based on blossom (roses in particular), and made from spices.
This is why La Venessiana’s Venice Food Journal is called Roses and Spices. We write about the lost chapters of Venetian food heritage, which are more than two thirds of the food Venice had been famous for during more than 1300 years.
HOW CAN WE ALL BENEFIT FROM ANCIENT VENETIAN RECIPES ?
Where in Venice can I taste these forgotten flavors of Venice ?
In the last few years, a few restaurants have been taking up these ancient recipes. And even a Museo del Profumo was opened at Palazzo Mocenigo in fall 2013, telling you the fascinating stories of the Venetian spice trade.
We are currently preparing a Venetian Spice Mapfor you which will contain all these places. The Map will be online on our Venice Travel & Lifestyle Blog, La Venessiana, in February 2018.
Why are we writing about these topics ?
We think it’s time to re-discover the incredibly rich, yet lost food story of Venice. Returning to Venice the credits for recipes she invented. Exploring how we can benefit in our times from these forgotten recipes.
Roses and Spices shares the original yet simple recipes with you. And it’s not just about cooking – we also include recipes for natural remedies, to get well again or avoid becoming ill by means of fragrant pharmacies. We also tell the story of Venetian beauty products and perfumery, based on these three ingredients – herbs, blossoms and spices.
ROSES AND SPICES – LEARN MORE ABOUT THE SECRET WORLD OF VENETIAN HERBS AND SPICES
Which are the sources of our recipes ?
Both Nonna Lina and Iris, the authors of La Venessiana, have been exploring the unknown side of Venetian food history for all our life. Lina as a chef and hotel owner, has been cooking in her own Venetian restaurants since 1945. She also inherited the books of a monastery library. It’s the book collections of the Convents of San Provolo and San Zaccaria, as her hotel, which she bought in 1968, is located on these ancient grounds. So these are book collections in private ownership, not accessible by the public. These books, family recipe journals and recipes Lina received from monks and nuns of other just make the picture complete.
Keep in touch and learn more about the secret Venetian food culture
In the course of 2018, we will be adding several resources to learn more about the ancient Venetian spice recipes. We will start with an e-book, Cooking in ice-blue – January in Venice, will will be followed by another book on the Culinary Traditions of Celebrating Carnival in Venice. In spring, our culinary e-courses and retreats will go live.
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