Discover some little-known facts about Italian culture
– The passionate Tiramisu
One of the most famous desserts in Italian cuisine is Tiramisu. Interestingly, it is the favourite dessert of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. It is difficult to resist the many layers of champagne biscuit dipped in coffee, mascarpone, cream and chocolate powder.
– Polenta? Yes please!
Polenta is an Italian creation and said to have been the staple food of legionnaires during the days of the Roman Empire. Back then it was made with oatmeal, and only later with wheat and corn flour. Polenta is a local delicacy in northern Italy.
– Italian inspired Christmas?
The Brazilian tradition of eating panettone at Christmas also came from Italy, as did eating similarly sweet fruit breads at Easter.
– The world’s first university
The University of Bologna is the oldest university in the world. It dates back to 1088 and was responsible for coining the term “university” as we know it today. Some of its famous alumni include the poet Petrarch, the writers Dante Alighieri and Umberto Eco, Erasmus of Rotterdam, and many Popes.