Between nature, history and territory: tradition meets science, Part-5

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Between nature, history and territory: tradition meets science, Part-5

Between nature, history and territory: tradition meets science and innovation is our new bi-weekly column, which deals with typical products, organic at zero km, and surrounding ecomony. Stefania Montori and Lucia De Carolis will accompany us on this journey that turns 360 days on a very fascinating world to explore.

Benefits of spelled and therapeutic properties Stefania continues to tell us about her research. The numerous vitamins present in this cereal with countless beneficial properties, in particular the B vitamins, contribute to the proper functioning of the nervous system and to the production of red and white blood cells.

Furthermore, the presence of thiocyanate (natural antibiotic) is recorded. Other benefits and therapeutic properties are as follows: Recent scientific research has confirmed the beneficial effect of dietary fiber, abundantly contained in spelled, for the heart, since it greatly reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke.

Fibers also contribute to the reduction of blood pressure in hypertensive subjects. the fibers contained in spelled are very useful in case of constipation and contribute to the reduction of intestinal gas. Clearly, for those who suffer from colitis it is not recommended to use it or in any case it is recommended not to abuse with the quantities taken.

Slimming diets and spelled The fibers present prolong the sense of satiety, helping people to stick to their weight loss diet more easily and without having to give up on taste. In fact, dietary recipes that involve the use of spelled are now multiplying on the web.Diabetes: also in this case the fibers allow you to control blood sugar and for those with diabetes they make spelled an excellent substitute for bread, pasta, rice or others.

cereals. History of spelt The progenitor of all the wheats known today. Very ancient cereal (10,000 years), it seems to be native to the Fertile Half Moon (between Iran, Iraq, Syria and Palestine), from here it spread to Egypt (it was found in Egyptian tombs), in the Mediterranean Basin and in Italy ( introduced by the colonies of the ancient Greeks present in the south).

In the Bible, Ezekiel used it as one of the ingredients for his bread (Ezekiel 4:9). For centuries spelled was the staple food of the Romans. Gira that turns you around in Italy apparently the Greeks brought it, in a little while the Romans made it with him and spread expanses of crops, so much so that it became their main dish.

Spelled was the food of the legionaries and the emperor Flavius ​​Claudius Julian (331-363 AD), called Julian the apostate, feeds on pulmentum, this sort of spelled soup mixed with different cereals and legumes, to give an example to Roman soldiers they had to have with them to be strong and ready to fight; a kind of K-ration of American soldiers during World War II.

From this term, which then derived the adjective pulmentarii to define the Romans who today would be called "polentoni", although then the various pultes were refined and took on different variants with the addition of flour, cheese, honey and egg.

Spelled puls always remained a national dish even if later around 150 BC. the Romans knew focaccia or Greek bread and learned to make bread. The term polenta remains in the diet but will then also be used throughout Italy to indicate a liquid food consisting of cereal flour or legumes dissolved in water.

From the Roman period up to the entire Middle Ages, agriculture maintained the characteristics described by Columella (4 - 70 AD), a writer and scholar of agriculture, and Varro (116 BC-27 BC); They mainly cultivated spelled, spelled, wheat, barley but also millet and panic, while oats were considered bad grass and were used by the Germans, rye by the bulls at the foot of the Alps, sorghum was mainly used for animals.

The puls or farratum was a traditional dish, even here it was prepared in various ways. A typical dish was the mola salsa a focaccia also used in religious rites, or il libum a kind of cake. In ancient Roman law, the rite of "Confarreatio" was in force, which consecrated the passage of the woman into her husband's family: it was a solemn rite reserved for patrician people and consisted of offering a spelled cake to the spouses.

The grains of this cereal were protected by Ceres, goddess of the Harvest, and therefore it was considered the grain of power. It was also a symbol of good luck, a sign of abundance and fertility and therefore given to the spouses, moreover it was also very fortifying, the doctor Galen (ed: ancient Greek doctor) reports that the armies had been replaced with barley with spelled because it was more energetic and nutritious and to better understand its importance it is good to say that together with the salt it was given as pay to the centurions themselves.

In that epgoose Rome exported it to all the places of conquest starting from the regions of northern Europe up to the extreme Italian provinces. Considered a very precious commodity, it served as a bargaining chip, as pay for the soldiers (the so-called grains of power).

After the cultivation of other varieties of cereals such as wheat, corn and rice, the cultivation of spelled has been decreasing over time until it almost disappeared. In the Middle Ages it was gradually abandoned as harvesting is made difficult by the fact that the grains tend to fall on the ground as they mature.

The grain is wrapped in a very hard outer film and in this regard the Romans originated a festival called Fornacalia which spread the technique of roasting spelled to free it from the peel. Toasting spelled soon became a daily practice of the ancient inhabitants of Italy.