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Sacripante and Sacripantina
An epic-confectionery poem

Giovanni Preti is notoriously associated with his stroke of genius in creating the two main products of his production: “Sacripante” and “Sacripantina” cakes.

Sacripante is a literary character of epic-chivalric  poem. It can be found in Boiardo’s masterpiece “Orlando in Love” and also in Ludovico Ariosto’s “The Orlando Furioso”.

His character is a Saracenic  king of Circassia, as well as a stalwart warrior. Like other Ariosto’s poem male characters, he’s in love with Angelica and for her protection  he lavishes all his care on her.

In France the female gender “Sacripant” can be found in “Miss Sacripant” which is the name of a stage costume wore by Odette de Crecy, a character of Proust’s masterpiece “In Search of Lost Time”, model for watercolourist Eltsir in Nice.
From the character’s given name derives “Sacripantia”. It’s an abstract noun used in the 1900s literary language with the meaning of a showing off behavior, an unconventional and provocative culture.

Giovanni Preti was probably seduced by this epic hero and found inspiration for “His Sacripante”: a fanciful-strong dessert, rich and original.
A high-quality pastry dessert. Soft sponge cake with cream, rhum and “Marsala” wine into a crispy dark chocolate top.

This dessert is unique in flavour and perfume. Giovanni Preti created also a female dessert, “Sacripantina” cake, he called his creation with a lovely diminutive without giving up seduction, he created a seductive and engaging dessert with a flirty name. Since 1851 “Sacripantina” cake belongs to Genoese: sponge cake cut into slim plates, dipped into “Marsala” wine. Enriched by butter and cocoa cream layers. rhum-flavour. The original boule-shape  remembers ladies’ skirt of that period. In the heart of Sacripantina there’s a hidden Canestrello biscuit.

It was the recognition of Giovanni Preti’s fame. “Sacripantina” was offered during sundays family lunches among Genoese families. It became the dessert offered for important events. It was well known among popular people of that time.
The sponge cake

In both these desserts the main ingredient is the sponge cake and once again we have to look back to history. In 1800, the Austrian Imperial army besieged the French led by André Massena, who were sheltered in Genoa. As it often happens during war actions, in the attempt to resist all foodstuffs have to be used. At that time, the harbour’s warehouses were stocked with a huge quantity of rice, that has been grinded and mixed with wheat flour to knead bread. French confectioner Chiboust, maybe thought to this episode and once decided to mix Hungarian wheat flour with potato flour, eggs, butter, sugar and flavourings. He obtained a bottom for cakes, something that was very similar to the sponge cake that in memory of Massena, called “Genoise”, Genoese.
1930s and our competitors

In 1930s, Giovanni Preti patented trademark and receipt of “Sacripantina” cake, from the heart of Genoa spread rapidly the competition with the competitors’ cake “Zena”. Maybe it was just for pride or maybe it was envy for the great success of “Sacripantina”, or it was simply a tribute to the city of Genoa. The inventors’ purpose was probably to overshadow the success of “Sacripantina”, this peculiar cake with a bizarre name, or to recommend a competitor cake to Genoese that could be offered during  sundays family lunches.

Not only pandolce  but also “Sacripantina” can be found overseas. More precisely on the West Coast of the United States, in San Francisco by “Stella Pastry & Café” there is a proud billboard that indicates “Home of the Sacripantina”.
The beginnings
Preti 1851 s.r.l. - Office and Factory: Via S. Carnevale - 16010 - S. Olcese (GE) - Italy
Phone (+39)010/70.98.52
Fax (+39)010/70.92.404
Authorized capital: € 176.000,00 - Fiscal code and VAT number: 02225000997
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