The quest for the Holy Grail is legendary, tied to King Arthur, Guinevere and Sir Lancelot, and the knights of the Rectangular Table. And though many stories abound, after extensive research on tumblr and Facebook, it seems clear that what was really happening in this famous story was in fact about food. 

It starts with The Traveling Nights, a singing group of the 12th century, made up of, yes knights, including Lancelot. As they traveled from gig to gig, they had to have food with them to endure the long rides in the hard wheeled wagons pulled by oxen. When they arrived in Siena, they found much happiness and a round food maven, known as Guinevere, that served them a spiced bread known as Panforte, which was often eaten in a wedge as a dessert and with a hot cup of cappuccino.

This special food changed two important facts in history. One Italian knight changed his name and became a hermit. The other returned to the table at home and insisted on changing the long rectangular table to a round one. This action created a wedge between the King, who loved Fruitcake, made in a rectangular pan and the Knight who had fallen for his new found love, the round Panforte.

This, dense, fabulous, sometimes rich spiced “bread” is sought by many, the world over. The recipes are kept secret by the Siena bakers, and each one is different, yet all share the same hard to resist wonderful flavor filled chewy “spiced” bread. Gorgeous to share ... or just eat yourself. Like the Panettone, once you try it, it says the holidays are here!

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