Marron glacé: a traditional dessert of Cuneo
The foot of the Piedmontese Pre-Alps and around Cuneo, is characterized by the presence of spontaneous forests and wooded vegetation. In this wonderful setting no one can avoid tasting the numerous chestnut-based dishes offered by traditional cuisine. These include from first courses to soups and also one of the most loved desserts in the Italian culinary repertoire: marron glacé.
The origins of marron glacé are still unclear and Italians and French compete for the authorship of this delicious dessert. Many also argue that the homeland of marron glacé is precisely the city of Cuneo, whose valleys have always abounded in chestnut groves. According to tradition, it was one of the cooks of the first Duke Emanuele who was the first to carry out the candying and to introduce the marron glacé recipe to nobility in 1550, a historical period in which the territory was part of the kingdom of Savoy.
The glaze of the Cuneo dessert required a fair amount of sugar, a very expensive commodity at the time, which kept this dessert out of the reach of most people. It seems that they were considered so precious that, even in the eighteenth century, noblewomen used to exchange these sweets to each other on New Year's Eve, as a new year greeting.
Instead, the claims of a French origin of the marron glacé are supported by a text from 1667, "Le parfait Confiturier", written by the famous seventeenth-century nouvelle cuisine cook François Pierre La Varenne. This writing in which the author talks exhaustively about the dessert is the first official testimony in which the marron glacé are mentioned.
The result of a slow and meticulous processing carried out strictly by hand in all its phases, including the very delicate triple glazing, marron glacé are still today considered an exquisite delicacy to be enjoyed at least once in a lifetime.
Is your mouth watering? Now you have another reason to book a flight to Cuneo with Air Dolomiti!