Saturday, January 28, 2012

Medieval Energy Bars: They're Back!

It's dark, chewy and protein-packed. It's fruity-sweet and studded with nuts. Sticky on the inside but smooth on the outside, it travels well.

It's panforte, a traditional Tuscan spiced fruitcake so dense as to be almost candy. Invented in medieval Siena, where monks baked it for local Crusaders enroute to the Holy Land -- hey, Crusaders need comfort food too -- this flour-sugar-citron-almond-hazelnut-clove-cinnamon-nutmeg-honey melange is made to last. Its very name means "strong bread" -- strong-tasting and more durable than donuts. It's history's first energy bar.

And it's back. At the 37th annual Fancy Food Show in San Francisco last week, no less than three different companies debuted brand-new versions of this glorious relic from an age when Istanbul was Constantinople, and sultans paid bounties for every severed Christian head.

Click here to read this article from the Huffington Post