May 092011
 


Having devoted some time to the questions of gianduia’s origins, we now turn to its composition.  Though recipes have varied over the years according to the cost and availability of ingredients, the earliest gianduiotti consisted of three principal ingredients: sugar, cacao, and roasted hazelnuts (1).

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Mar 142011
 

To this point, we’ve discussed the pre-history of gianduia up to the 1850s.  Now, let’s step back and look at the origin of Gianduia, the commedia dell’arte mask and namesake of gianduia and gianduiotti.  The traditional origin story of Gianduia, the mask, begins with two puppeteers, Giambattista Sales and Gioachino Bellone (1).

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Feb 072011
 

Though gianduia was not invented in direct and contemporary response to the Continental System, Napoleon implemented two policies that would have a deep and long-lasting impact on Piedmontese confectionery.

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Jan 312011
 

Damaging though it is, the lack of substantiation for gianduia’s early nineteenth century invention might not be fatal to the theory.  (Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.)  However, several strong circumstantial arguments also militate against that dating.

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Jan 242011
 

This week, we return to the myth of the early nineteenth century invention of gianduia.  The setting of the story—the Continental System and its impact on industry and individuals—can be easily established.  Yet there are no known contemporary sources describing gianduia or a gianduia-like substance in Piedmont during the six years between the Berlin Decree and the de facto collapse of the Continental System in the summer of 1812 when Russia and England made peace with the Treaty of Örebro.

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