Forget Hansel & Gretel's candy cottage, Naples was building fortresses of food in the 18th century! This week, we're investigating the Neapolitan tradition of cuccagna- a festival celebrating a mythical land of food, where roast chicken rained from the skies and wine flowed in rivers. Learn how early modern Neapolitans built giant edible monuments to celebrate birthdays, weddings, and holidays, complete with fortresses of ham, bell towers made of cheese, and lakes of beer! Was it all in good gluttonous fun or did the festival have a deeper political purpose? We'll also speak with Dr. Alan Darr at the Detroit Institute of Arts, where you can see relics of these early modern feasts at the Edible Monuments Exhibition, on until April 16th.
Written & Produced by Laura Carlson
Technical Direction by Mike Portt