What is CT COOK in NDRF


For a long time, there has been a consensus in anthropology and other academic disciplines that eating and drinking are central elements of human identity. Food, in particular, reveals how closely nature and culture are intertwined.1 Culinary systems contain criteria for differentiation, ordering and classification of the living world and the fixation of the place, which the individual has in the world. From it are derived the rules which the members of a particular culture use for the production, preparation and consumption of foodstuffs. Claude Lévi-Strauss (1908–2009), therefore, describes the cuisine of a society as a language, which helps translate and depict social structures.2 Therefore, in studying eating habits, anthropologists such as Lévi-Strauss and Mary Douglas (1921-2007) have concentrated on revealing these structures and describing the set of rules that determine them.3

However, what does it mean when the currently most famous British chef, Jamie Oliver (born 1975), avowedly orientates towards above all the Mediterranean, Italian cuisine and seeks to spread this with missionary zeal,4 when a booklet with the best recipes of Scottish pubs and teahouses contains instructions for "tagliatelle with sun dried tomatoes, leeks and white wine",5 and when an American cookbook for European readers tries to sell "macaroni and cheese" as a classic American dish?6 This phenomenon of Italianization, which is also evident in Germany, Switzerland, Belgium and the Netherlands, is striking and therefore has drawn considerable interest in food research, particularly in connection with the examination of the nation state, migration and globalization.7 The existing studies of different national cuisines have repeatedly emphasized the central role played by stereotypes for both the construction of one's own and the perception of the other's cuisine.8 Besides this, a new interest in Mediterranean and, in particular, Italian cuisine has emerged motivated by health concerns and the view of Italian cooking as the embodiment of a diet rich in fish, fruit and vegetables that is low in meat and animal fats. This is not simply a change in "taste" or a product of globalization but rather a phenomenon that goes back to a whole bundle of factors that are intertwined with one another in many ways. The following attempts to trace the outlines of the career of Italian cuisine in Europe and explore the reasons for its great success. It will try to show that, even over time and despite certain differences, the pattern of reception retained considerable similarities.

Certainly, there is strong evidence that eating habits in Europe have becoming increasingly similar.9 In practice, Italian restaurants exist everywhere.10 Figures on consumption, however, are generally average; they do not say anything on how the foodstuffs bought are prepared. In addition, they hide differences and thus also the diets of migrants, who maintain their eating habits longer than other elements of their lifestyle. However, for a long time, Italian restaurants have not only been run by Italians but also by other migrants, although one would expect that the padrone of a high-class Italian restaurant would be of Italian descent.

In recent years, it has become accepted that globalization is not a unilinear process but rather means the migration of cultural goods in several directions and that it is not only driven by omnipotent economic powers.11 The determining factors are whether and how global developments are adopted and implemented locally and / or regionally by producers and consumers.12 This dialectic of globalization and localization is very clear in the spread of Italian cuisine. It is accompanied by the appreciation of regional products and cuisines, which had already started in the 1930s with the attempts to promote tourism and today are pushed by organizations such as Slow food other ark.13 Concrete economic interests have always been involved. At the same time, one can see that local tastes account for small but important differences in preparation, precisely when certain dishes with particular national connotations are adopted elsewhere. This can be seen in the example of the pizza, which is produced in countless national and regional variations.14 For example, in southern France herbed oil is always sprinkled over the pizza when it is taken out of the oven, while pizza takeaways in Germany offer pizza with asparagus and hollandaise sauce. In the Benelux countries and Great Britain, pizza is seen as a fast food, while Germany has - just as in the past - pizzerias which are visited by families as simple, uncomplicated and relatively cheap restaurants.

Indeed, the career of Italian cuisine can only be understood as a transfer process in which the eaters are not passive but rather actively reconfigure their diets. Decisive here is how they perceived Italian cuisine as a whole, what they judged to be "typically" Italian, what elements and dishes they adopted in their repertoire and how these elements differ between countries. This leads to the demand to see the career of Italian cuisine as a product of the circulation of people, information and goods that fundamentally changed the cooking styles of various European countries.

However, it is an inadmissible simplification to speak of at Italian cuisine as Italy was, of course, strongly politically and culturally divided well into the 19th century. Certainly, Italian cooking still dominated the European royal courts into the 16th century. From the 17th century, an international cuisine, strongly influenced by France drove it out.15 In Italy itself, there were considerable regional differences resulting from the various agrarian and industrial structures. Therefore, talk of a national cuisine would be inappropriate,16 not to mention that nation states only appeared late and their borders have not - and do not - always correspond to cultural boundaries. Thus, the food in regions of southern France and southern Italy is similar due to relative closeness in climate and the resulting agricultural methods and structures, which mean that the same products are available. The question of how to differentiate so-called national cuisines is also problematic - should one use foodstuffs, spices or methods of preparation / dishes? The Italian pizza is also known in France, here in the variation of the pissaladière. In Turkey, one eats the structurally similar lahmacun, in AlsaceTarte and in Germany Onioncake.17 Noodles are also known in Germany, and dishes similar to risotto exist in Spain (Paella). Pistou, used - for example - to season bouillabaisse in Marseille, hardly differs from GenovesePesto. Equally, Spanish tapas are very similar to Italian appetisers. The differences are subtle; they first emerged in the wake of the professionalization and increasing international mobility of chefs, and the flood of gastronomic literature that began in the 19th century.18 Within this, from as early as the 18th century, the professional gastronomy in France has been developing a canon of classic dishes, whereas the Italians resisted the unifying influences of French cuisine.19 An equivalent to the middle-class, nationalist cookbooks that had been coming out in Europe since the middle of the 19th century only appeared in Italy in 1891 with La Scienza in cucina e l'arte di mangiar bene by Pellegrino Artusis (1820-1911).20 If the following talks of at Italian cuisine and its influence, then this is fully conscious of the fact that this is basically an inadmissible simplification which requires further refinement through a look at individual products or dishes and extension with a critical reconstruction of the image which other Europeans had of Italian food. Within the analysis, it is necessary to pay attention to the agents and intermediaries of these processes of cultural transfer through whom knowledge of Italian eating habits and customs arrived in other countries, whether it was in the intellectual luggage of those traveling through Italy or migrants, in the gastronomic literature or the concrete offers of trade.

The Importance of the Grand Tour and Tourism

Movements of migration and travel are in general an important factor in the transfer of foodstuffs and the establishment of relationships of exchange between countries or continents; This is the case for potatoes, coffee and sugar, which arrived in Europe in the wake of colonization.21 This is particularly clear from the example of the United States of America as a melting point; here the diversity of the cuisine is a symbol of the nation's diversity. It is therefore of particular importance that since the 18th century, Italy has been the destination of those seeking edification and that the grand tour belonged to the conclusion of the education of every young man.22 In this context, numerous travelogues were written and published. In accordance with the goal of travel, they concentrated on art and culture, but increasingly turned their attention to politics, the economy and daily life. The picture they drew of Italy was of political division, ignorance, poverty, lawlessness and lethargy. The popular culture with its sense of beauty and sociability should as a moral force help overcome the predominant political division of the country. The beauties of the country also included the abundance of fruit and vegetables, which - along with its pleasant climate - made Italy appear to be an earthly paradise. According to the Italian trip (1786–1788) by Johann Wolfgang Goethe (1749–1832) [], the paradisiacal surroundings shaped the disposition and produced the boisterous cheerfulness of Italians, who worked to live. He saw the resulting passivity as responsible for Italy's technical, scientific and economic backwardness,23 which he believed to be the primary reason for the simple, unsophisticated and authentic cuisine. Like Goethe, the 19th-century travel literature sought this authentic cuisine, and travelers reported on its rarity compared to the increasingly common international hotel cuisine aimed at broad tastes. Clearly, knowledge of foreign eating habits was expected as part of the education of travelers, but not always the adoption of them.24

For travelers in search of an authentic experience of travel, a growing range of guidebooks with practical information on planning and undertaking a journey had existed since the 18th century. Merchants, pilgrims and gentlemen had always used printed travel guides. However, the appearance of the Handbook for Travelers on the Continent (1829), published by the Briton John Murray (1808-1892) marked the creation of a modern type of commercial guidebook which contained maps and information on hotels, inns, local festivals and customs.25 This model was repeatedly copied, in Germany above all by Karl Baedeker (1801-1859), whose guides so dominated the market that his name became a synonym for an entire literary genre. Already the first Baedeker on Italy from 1866 offered a short introduction to Italian catering and its division into osterias, trattorias, ristorantes, cafés and bars, as well as a rough description of Italian food and in certain cases details of recommended restaurants and particular regional specialties.26 Tellingly, this information took up ever more space,27 until at the turn of the 20th century a new type of guide emerged that concentrated almost exclusively on eating and drinking. There was, for example, the guide by Hans Barth (1862–1928)Osteria: a guide to Italy's gift-giving from Verona to Capri (1908), which also sought to meet the educational appetites of the middle class with the many quotations littered through it.28 The increase in car ownership produced a further spurt of development. However, the new guidebooks for drivers, for example the Guida gastronomica d'Italia, were not a genuinely Italian invention. They followed the French model as already published in 1914 by the French Touring Club.29 These guidebooks did not present Italian cuisine as uniform, but rather emphasized regional differences that were seen as traditional and the very reason for the charm of travel. In the end, this produced the large, internationally known and to date most important gastronomic guides such as the Guide Michelin, which from 1923 contained not only driving routes but also tips on hotels and restaurants; in Germany, the VARTA guide came into the shops in 1957 and in 1969 the Gault Millau. In Great Britain, too, The Good Food Guide, which first appeared in the 1950s, presented and evaluated restaurants.30

The development of travel literature indicates in general the growing role of food for those traveling to Italy. This suggests that it was sought out as an important element of the experience of travel. The local Italian tourist industry recognized this. After 1945, the Italian association for the promotion of tourism (E.N.I.T.; Ente Nationale Italiano per il Turismo) targeted a discriminating and affluent clientele that had time to discover the country. This clientele was invited to participate actively in the country's culinary life. They were presented with the differences in the cultural code of Italian cuisine. This cooking might be simple, but the quality of the ingredients, the careful preparation and the diversity of regional differences easily compensated for this. Knowing these subtle differences was a cultural capital that defined social distinctions. In the period of nascent mass tourism, such subtleties were urgently needed in order to maintain social differentiation: for, alongside the travelers in search of edification and culinary experiences, there was now the mass tourist. For the latter, who had to be careful about money and therefore stayed in budget hotels, guesthouses or at a camping site, a new type of guidebook appeared on the market which above all contained practical tips, information on cheap restaurants and dishes; As a result, they played up to the stereotypes of Italian cooking and its reduction to a few dishes.31 These publications frankly and openly recommended eating in the pizzeria, in the restaurants of the less wealthy where guests could buy a meal for 68 pfennigs. In the same breath, they assured their readers that even the Florentines, famous for their sophisticated tastes, ate pizza now and again instead of enjoying an extended, time-consuming meal. As a result, the number of restaurants where customers ate standing, which today are blamed for the decline of Italian cooking, increased considerably.32

Nevertheless, tourists sought out the "genuine" Italian or regional cuisine. Already at the beginning of the 20th century, Italian restaurants advertised themselves as offering "genuine Roman" or "genuine Italian" cooking, which in turn is evidence of an adroit economic use of stereotypes. Those dishes appeared which today are seen as typically Italian - pizza, Neapolitan spaghetti, fonduta other Bagna Cauda from Piedmont, tagliatelle, tortellini and lasagne from Emilia-Romagna.33 In addition, the drawings and later photographs of Italian street scenes often sold as postcards to be sent home are telling: besides depictions of landscapes, one is struck by the picturesque images showing spaghetti drying in Naples's streets or how men and boys eat from mobile snack bars.34

One should, however, not exaggerate the actual impact of tourism. In the 1950s and 1960s, the promotion and critique of tourism were far ahead of reality, and the financial opportunities of the European population in this time were still very limited;35 moreover, the adoption of Italian cuisine did not coincide with the movements of tourists. In 1961, only four per cent of Britons went on holiday abroad and of these only 17 per cent went to Italy. By 1975, i.e. the period in which Italian cuisine was booming in literature and catering, this figure was only seven per cent, while a third of travelers went to Spain, which - however - has barely left any traces in the British or German culture of eating.36 This in no way hindered the spread of Italian cooking. Instead, the images of Italy were emotionally charged. Through the ubiquity of Italy in magazines, in numerous Hollywood films set in Italy,37 Italian pop songs and the corresponding artists,38 Italian fashion and design of the 1950s and 1960s, an impression of Italy established itself in people's heads that rested on the images from the 18th century and could be quoted whenever needed. In this way, Italy was not only promoted directly; it also acted as a reference for the advertisement of all sorts of products, for example the Vespa. Here, the country only served as a backdrop that evoked the good life.

Italian migration

Of at least the same importance as the stream of travelers to Italy were the stream of Italian migrants. Labor migration, above all motivated by poverty, had been significant since the 18th century. In the early modern period, especially artists, plasterers, stonemasons and terrazzo layers, i.e. trained and well-paid craftsmen, traveled abroad for higher wages. Just as sutlers followed armies, so at the beginning of the 20th century did artists, tradesmen and ice-cream makers leave Italy in order to supply wine, tropical fruit and cheese to their compatriots, who placed considerable value on their native cuisine. Italian wine, lemons, anchovies and Parmesan cheese, but also macaroni, were commonly available in Munich, Paris and London as early as the 19th century. Cities with large Italian communities, for example Hamburg, also already had Italian greengroceries.39 These retailers often developed into taverns or restaurants.40 Although initially intended for Italians, these eateries were increasingly sought out by Germans. In addition, one must not forget the Italian chefs who played an important role, at least at the south German courts. They brought their culinary knowledge and, to a certain extent, their products. Italian ice-cream parlors were a special case: since the 19th century, Italian ice-cream makers have swarmed out of the 37 villages in the valleys of Zoldo and Caldore in the north Italian Dolomites across all of Europe in order to sell their ice-cream in summer. Even today, they return to their homeland in winter.41 In this point they clearly differ from the London hostels and cafes set up in Soho or the West End in the last quarter of the 19th century in order to supply the Italian immigrant communities.These mostly consisted of political fugitives or young men running from military service. Above all they attracted bohemians, who had little money but hunger and curiosity for new dishes. Many of these eateries were in the theater districts. The 1860s and 1870s witnessed a veritable boom in the creation of new restaurants. An important attribute of these restaurants was the preferably "Italian", picturesque decor.42 This decor had a drawing power of its own: thus, Josef Deutelmoser opened in 1890 the Osteria Bavaria in Munich, which was admittedly adorned with Italian-style frescos and offered Italian wine but served German food.43 In Berlin, in contrast, there were two Italian restaurants around 1900 that had been wine taverns in the past and were used by the 2,000 Italians living there as a meeting place; however, they were also visited by Germans.

The Italian migrants were seen as willing and industrious workers with only modest needs. Employers valued them due to their moderation. It was, however, well known that they rejected German food entirely, forming squadras to employ their own chefs.44 They used only the foodstuffs imported from Italy by the factory owners. Where this was impossible in the long term, there were protests or remigration.45 This was a confirmation of the claim in travel and gastronomic literature regarding the adherence to old traditions. The equally often stated simplicity of the cooking was observed critically by medical professionals and dieticians, particularly the Italians' low consumption of meat.46 In the 19th century, dieticians were above all interested in creating a diet for workers that emphasized cost and utility. Their research demonstrated, in comparison to other Europeans, the Italians' low consumption of meat, cheese and eggs - indeed, animal fats in general - and high consumption of bread, vegetables and wine, as well as the regional differences within Italy. Because the amount of animal protein was generally seen as the measure of the quality of a diet,47 the scientists were very skeptical of Italian cuisine, not least because it was known that pellagra was endemic in the maize-growing areas due to a lack of niacin. Often the Italians' food was seen as weak and parallels to the their short stature were drawn.48 However, later studies of the workers of the Ruhr area in the 1940s confirm what was already evident from those of the 19th century - that this diet was sufficient to maintain health and performance. After the discovery of vitamins in 1913 and the recognition of the so-called lifestyle diseases resulting from a diet high in meat and fat, this perception changed and the earlier alleged disadvantage of Italian cooking became its great virtue. The adjusted view of Italian cuisine, high in fruit, vegetables and vitamins, not only harmonized with the new dietary teaching; it also fitted better into the economic situation of the 1920s and 1930s and the Fascist politics of Benito Mussolini (1883-1945), who used it to create and promote Italian identity.49 In this way, knowledge of how others fed themselves not only underpinned one's own culinary identity but also legitimized the reform of food consumption by adopting traditional elements. Increasingly, Italian cooking was seen as a good example of a healthy and politically correct diet.50

Gastronomic Literature

From the 1950s, these developments were taken up by the constantly growing stream of gastronomic literature. As evident from the above-mentioned example of the cookbook by Pellegrino Artusi, which is commonly seen as Italy's first national cookbook, the gastronomic literature from Italy was received with something of a delay: Artusi's work only appeared in Spain in translation in 1917, where it was followed by new editions in 1922, 1933 and 1948. At least based on the relevant national library catalogs, translations of this classic never appeared in France, Sweden, Norway, Poland, Finland or Czechoslovakia. In Germany, a translation was first published in 1986, in the Netherlands in 2001 and in Great Britain in 2003, i.e. that period of reception which Alan Warde (born 1949) has described as the period of the search for authenticity in ethnic cuisine. Clearly, only Spain had the conditions early on for the successful marketing of the book due to its similar culinary system and more rural, simple cooking, while the gastronomic literature of the other countries mentioned first had to translate these concepts themselves. In these countries, single Italian recipes appeared instead in the different national cookbooks. Thus, the first edition of the classic cookbook by Henriette Davidis (1801–1876) [] from 1845 contains a recipe for "Macroni, or pasta with Parmisan cheese [sic!]".51 At the beginning of the 20th century, collections from different countries came out, for example Julius Menschl's book A culinary trip around the world from 1913.52 From the 1920s, recipes with the adjective "Italian" appeared in women's magazines or gastronomic journals. Specialized cookbooks on Italian cuisine were published at the same time, first in Switzerland and Austria, i.e. countries with direct contact to Italy where cultural exchange between the neighboring peoples created the need to underline cultural differences. Even the title of Vittorio Agnetti's book - "not just macaroni" - from 1916 shows that stereotypes had already acquired dominance. According to the forword, his goal as an Italian was to extend the culinary horizons of the reader, "to bring something genuinely new and original onto the gastronomic territory". Cosi si mangia in Italia by Maria Leoni from 1914 and The good Italian cuisine by Maria Gaeta-Hahne from 1928 contrasted the variety of Italian cooking with the common picture of a cuisine for poor people. They claimed that Italian cuisine even excelled that of the French in taste and richness.53