Among the typical desserts of the city of Ferrara, the pampepato or pampapato, certainly plays a leading role for its antiquity and its history.
Ferrara Store offers you a pampepato of highest quality, choosing the best pampepato in the province of Ferrara, for the ingredients used in its production and for its organoleptic qualities.
In all likelihood the birth of pampepato Ferrara is due to the custom of the twelfth century to prepare the "enriched bread" for Christmas, special breads made from flour, water, dried fruit and spices, ideal for the period of advent because, not being rich in fat, they could be consumed even in the days when you could not eat meat.
The origin of the name of pampepato is controversial but most likely the pampapato of Ferrara has taken its name after the devolution of Ferrara to the Church state, and, in honor of the Pope, pampapato or pampepato would mean "bread of the pope."
Another version instead tends to associate the name of pampepato with the spices which originally composed it: dividing the name in pan "pepato" (“spiced”) in fact we would have confirmation of this theory.
The date of the recipe pampepato Ferrara still remains a mystery: some say it comes from an ancient recipe of Pontelagoscuro, but the best hypothesis is that the pampepato Ferrara was invented by the nuns in the monasteries of the twelfth century, as a Christmas present for prelates. The fact that within the pampepato Ferrara there were spices like nutmeg and cinnamon, very expensive at the time, contributes to this idea on the birth of the pampepato of Ferrara, as only the clerical and monastic orders had the economic capacity to buy these spices.
Other historical references of the pampepato can be found in ancient texts and testimonies on the life of the Este court, it seems that Borso d'Este in 1465, at a gala dinner, had instructed a footman to put into the pampepato Ferrara, which would be served to each guest, a gold ducat as a gift.
Thanks to Cristoforo Messisbugo and his Scalcheria Treaty of 1549, we know that a pampepato of sugar was served at the Este court of Ferrara.
Even about the shape of the pampepato Ferrara, today typically shaped like a skullcap, opinions are controversial. A first version sees the pampepato produced in its current form, in honor to Cardinal Ippolito II d'Este, during the festival held in Ferrara in 1566 for the succession to the government of Alfonso of Este. Another version instead sees the cloistered nuns of the Corpus Domini in Ferrara as designers of the new form given to pampapato Ferrara, during the sixteenth century.
In the sixteenth century, the recipe of the pampepato was composed from ingredients such as flour, almonds, candied citron, spices and milk.
From 1500 onwards, the pampepato becomes the Christmas cake beloved by the people of Ferrara, with such influence that it cannot be missing on the tables on Christmas day.
Only in the twentieth century, however, thanks to pastry chef Guido Ghezzi, the pampepato of Ferrara becomes the pampepato we know today and that we find on our tables. .
Guido Ghezzi from Milan moved in Ferrara in 1902, opening a pastry shop: he reworked an old recipe of the pampepato of Ferrara of the sixteenth century, changing the recipe to make it more tasty and covering the cake with the chocolate coating, removing the seventeenth century the old cover made of confetti.
Given the success of the new pampepato of Ferrara, Ferrara bakers and pastry chefs tried to imitate him, often giving rise to severe failures, but also to equally appetizing variants of the pampepato of Ferrara. Indeed the recipes for the pampepato of Ferrara were (and still are) many and vary primarily on the quantity of the ingredients, that make it more spicy and flavored, or sweeter or less sweet.
The Pampepato of Ferrara, for its history and its origin, for the changes over time of its shape, ingredients and cover, it has become the most well-known dessert of the province of Ferrara, a cake the people of Ferrara go proud of and that has become indispensable for them at Christmas time.
We invite you to visit us in Ferrara Store: you will find a welcoming environment in which you can choose with care between the various typical foods of Ferrara and where you can find the salama da sugo, the pumpkin cappellacci, the garlic of Voghiera, the pampapato, the wine of the Eliceo forest, the coppia ferrarese and the pumpkin flatbread. If you could not come and visit us in person, you can buy our products in our online shop by clicking here.
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