Symbol of Goodness: Bread, introduced into the diet in ancient times. Simple recipes, passed down from ancient Egypt to our days. It is not just a fundamental food in many culinary cultures, but a symbol of traditions, stories, and cultures.
Take, for example, the baguette, with its typical elongated shape, now a symbol of France and exported worldwide. Its origin? It can be seen as a symbol of technological innovation. In fact, it was only made possible after the introduction of steam ovens, allowing for a crispy crust and the characteristic oblique slashes. Not just for its elongated shape, but also a symbol of the ingenuity of French bakers in the 1920s. When a law prevented them from working before four in the morning, they developed the idea of a new design: from the round loaf to the elongated shape to ensure it could bake before the arrival of customers.
Our beloved “pane crocetta” is also a symbol of our history, an adaptation to changing laws. Among the first examples are found in Ferrara, at the Este court, when legislators dictated strict rules for the production and conservation of bread. Among these, the bread had to have little ears, be well-cooked, and not sink while baking. To adapt to the new law, the idea of these croissants was developed.
Examples of food between tradition and evolution can also be found in our time. Do you know the “Pan de Re”? The “Pan de Re” is bread made according to traceability rules. In 2010, the Agriculture Department of the Province of Reggio Emilia presented the “Pan de Re” project (bread for kings or bread of Reggio Emilia) aimed at producing bread of controlled quality with a short supply chain, coming from integrated production that respects the environment and health. The consumer can know the origins of the bread from the place where the cereals are grown, to the milling of the flour, to the baking. So, we can see this bread as a symbol of our time, of people who seek to promote local products with attention to their quality and origin.
Round loaves, filoni, soft or crunchy bread, each a symbol of a time, a symbol of the people who lived it, of what has been passed down to them, and their innovations. Inevitable on our tables, not just because it is delicious, but bread as a history, a story, and a bridge between the past and the future.