During the lockdown, many Italians have rediscovered the passion for the authenticity of our table, experimenting in the kitchen with traditional recipes. However, Italians' attention to good food has very ancient origins: already in the sixteenth century our eating habits were a point of reference for the European courts.
Federico Motta Editore recently spoke about this topic, with an article published on the official website. To learn more about the history of Italian cuisine, the Publishing House recommends the essay by Alberto Capatti, within the volume The Sixteenth Century on the Modern Age, published by Federico Motta Editore and edited by Umberto Eco.
The banquets of lords, popes and princes were extremely rich, consisting of four to seven services, each of which with at least twelve different courses. The initial and final service, called "di credenza", were based on cold dishes such as salads, meats, cakes, pies, fruit, caci. The central "kitchen" services were instead composed of hot dishes such as macaroni, meats, fish and omelettes. The diners were entertained between one service and the next by dances, music and comic improvisations. Even the table of the poorest was quite varied, consisting mainly of local products: the consumer was also the producer himself of the dishes, which ranged from the meat of the animals reared at home to the products of the fields. The scholar Ortensio Lando and the French philosopher Michel de Montaigne have provided us with precious testimonies on Italian culinary customs in the sixteenth century.