The World Week of Italian Cuisine is an annual event created to celebrate Italy’s incredibly varied cuisine and food traditions. It is composed of a wide array of events promoting culinary culture and flavours to millions of consumers worldwide. The second edition of the World Week of Italian Cuisine has taken place in over 100 countries across the world, and only in China more than 120 events were organized. This Consulate has planned a series of events in southern China, including this photo exhibition jointly organized with the Guangzhou Library: “PELLEGRINO ARTUSI E L’UNITÀ D’ITALIA IN CUCINA”, which will draw a perfect end to the 2nd World Week of Italian Cuisine in southern China.
Pellegrino Marcello Artusi is regarded as Father of Italian Cuisine, and his book “La scienza in cucina e l’arte di mangiare bene” (“The Science in the Kitchen and the Art of Eating Well”) is considered by many as a culinary bible.
Artusi was born at the beginning of the 19th century in a wealthy merchant family, and he spent many years in Bologna’s student circles. When he returned to his hometown, he took over his father’s business, making quite a big fortune. The family then moved to Florence, and Pellegrino began working in finances, and he also dedicated his time to two of his favorite hobbies: literature and the art of cooking.
After Italy’s political unification in 1861, Pellegrino Artusi, made a lasting contribution with his book La scienza in cucina e l’arte di mangiare bene, first published in 1891, which included distinctive regional recipes, and it also helped shape a unified Italian cuisine. The book was firstly self-published, but it soon caught on, and before Artusi died, more than 200,000 copies had been sold. Filled with amusing anecdotes as well as recipes, the book is a perennial best seller in Italy, and has been translated into Spanish, French, Dutch, German, English and, most recently, Portuguese. Artusi’s cookbook has since become a culinary bible for generations thereafter.
Writing only two decades after the unification of Italy, Artusi was the first to include recipes from all the different regions of Italy in a single cookbook. He is often credited with establishing a truly national Italian cuisine for the first time. Italian was adopted as an official language of the newly-unified State, having previously been a literary language based on Tuscan spoken mostly by the upper class of Florentine society. Although only 2.5% of Italians could speak the standardized language in 1861, preferring the local languages, Pellegrino Artusi wrote his La scienza in cucina e l’arte di mangiare bene in standard Italian. Artusi’s masterpiece is therefore not merely a popular cookbook; it is a landmark work in Italian culture, with great importance in the context of Italian history and politics as well.
At his hometown Forlimpopoli, Casa Artusi was founded in the name of the cultured gastronomist. The site was rebuilt on the monumental complex of a church, Chiesa dei Servi, and it stretches out over 2800 m2, divided into different function areas, all dealing with different aspects of gastronomic culture. Casa Artusi – library, restaurant, cookery school, wine cellar, bookshop, museum and location for events – is a living museum to home cookery.
“PELLEGRINO ARTUSI E L’UNITÀ D’ITALIA IN CUCINA”
21st December, 2017 – 16th January, 2018
8th Floor, Guangzhou Library
NO.4 Zhujiang Dong Road, Tianhe District