From the gastronomic geography of the Po to the love for salmon in Parma

Many people would not relate Parma to salmon, yet in our area, fish has always had a strong social value. Let's discover why with Professor Ballarini.

Famous worldwide for its culinary pleasures, Parma has a special predilection for salmon, which has the merit of having influenced the passion from which Upstream was born.

But what does Parma have to do with salmon?

Not everyone knows how much salmon is loved here, nor do they know the origins of the link between our city and fish.

With Professor Giovanni Ballarini's information, we began our discussion in the article Smoked salmon in Parma; let's return to the subject, this time to learn more about the local  geography of the river Po and about a funny dispute that sprung up over fish between the bishops of Parma and Cremona. 

This is as far back as 1150 and even then fish was very important in these territories.

Professor Ballarini narrates that there were certain times of the year when good Christians did not eat meat, but only fish. This distinction was determined by the communication related to Noah's ark, according to which only what was inside the ark was considered meat. A very significant difference for the culinary habits that followed Christmas. It is no coincidence, as Professor Ballarini explains, that with Carnival 'meat I salute you' begins the period of Lent, in which abstaining frim eating meat had a social value too.

But  for everything that came from the water it was a different matter. 

However, the supply of fish was not equal. The poor had to look for them in the wells, the lords could afford something else, i. e. the big fish in the big river and the big lakes. 

But, how did fresh fish arrive and get stored in Parma? And what was the bishop's role in all this?

Professor Ballarini tells us more: listen to Upstream podcast The river Po and its gastonomic geography. The dispute between  Parma and Cremona.

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