The Likely Origins of Torrone
Italy has its fair share of legendary desserts, however one stands above them all around the holiday season: the Torrone. All over Italy, The candy known as Torrone is a southern European nougat confection, typically made of honey, sugar, and egg white, with toasted almonds or other nuts, and usually shaped into either a rectangular tablet or a round cake. As popular as this delectable treat is, its origins are heavily disputed amongst the Italian community.
The city of Cremona in Lombardy has long proclaimed itself as the home of classical Torrone and swears that the sweet was served there for the first time after the marriage of the Tuscan-born mercenary Francesco Sforz, to Bianca Maria Visconti on October 2, 1441.
It has also been rumored that Torrone arrived in Cremona long before the marriage of Sforza and Bianca in the 1200’s when the Holy Roman Emperor, Frederick II, visited the city along with his many gourmet chefs. There is strong evidence to suggest that he is responsible for why it is served during Christmas time since he had a tradition of eating an exotic candy on his birthday (which happens to fall on December 26th).
There is further evidence that the Torrone in Italy has an even longer past as historians have noted that Romans were introduced to the sweet treat by the Samnites during the years of the wars between them in the 3rd and 2nd centuries BCE.
Whatever the final verdict you come to on the origin of the Torrone, its place in Italian Christmas culinary rolodex has been cemented.
We hope you’ve enjoyed discovering The Likely Origins of Torrone! What is your favorite foreign holiday treat? Join the conversation below!