John Bosco was born near Castelnuovo in the archdiocese of Turin, Italy in 1815. He was raised by his mother, Margaret, as his father had died when John was a toddler of only two. Saint John Bosco founded the Salesian Society and dedicated his life to the welfare and education of the youth. He is the patron saint of apprentices; boys; teachers; laborers; schoolchildren; students of all ages and (my personal favorite) juvenile delinquents.
I’ve heard tell you can have Polenta without baking it. I’ve never done so. There’s something about the texture that just doesn’t sit well with me. Just as grits don’t feel right in my mouth. It’s a personal thing. However; when additional flavors such as herbs and good quality cheeses are added to the mix, and then everything is fried or baked into a bread-like dish, it’s absolutely divine! But then again, I’m a big fan of cornbread and the main ingredient in Polenta is ground cornmeal . . .
It is said that Chicken Marengo was created on the battlefield by Napoleon’s Swiss chef, a fellow named Dunand. Napoleon was of the habit of not eating until the end of a battle, believing that what he ate could affect the outcome of the fight. Rather than eat anything at all and tempt fate, he went hungry. It seems Napoleon wasn’t alone in this strange habit, others likewise believed that food could somehow change the course of history.