Emmanuel Macron calls for UNESCO status for French baguette

Culture

Art of Neapolitan ‘Pizzaiuolo’

Naples, Italy, is known as the birthplace of what is arguably the world's most recognizable dish — pizza. But only 3,000 pizza bakers are officially recognized Pizzaiuoli, and can use the traditional wood-fired oven and dough preparation techniques.

Culture

Yoga - an international phenomenon

Yoga is not only physical exercise, but a mental and spiritual one as well. Yoga originated in India in the fifth century BC, and is used to "help individuals build self-realization, ease any suffering they may be experiencing and allow for a state of liberation." Yoga came to the attention of Western cultures in the mid 19th century and is now practiced all around the world.

Culture

Falconry provides a link to the past

Falconry, the art of training falcons, was originally used as "a method of obtaining food," but has since evolved into a method of social engagement and nature conservation. It's a widespread practice, and UNESCO lists it as intangible cultural heritage for 18 countries in the Middle East, Asia and Europe.

Culture

Coffee culture

Arabic coffee has played a cultural role in the Middle East, the birthplace of the coffee house. The drink is served strong, in small cups, sometimes with cardamom but never with sugar. The English word coffee comes from the Dutch kofffie, which itself is a transliteration of the Arabic "qahwa."

Culture

Tango dancing

Tango developed from European, African and Native American dancing traditions in the 1880s along the border between Argentina and Uruguay. The partner dance, which has become hugely popular around the world, was banned in Argentina during the military dictatorship of the late 20th century, but has flourished since the return of democracy in 1983.

Culture

Spanish riding in Austria

Vienna's Spanish Riding School was added to UNESCO's list in 2015. Named for the Spanish horses that formed the base of the riding hall's Lipizzan breed, the school was first formed by the Hapsburg monarchy in 1572. The oldest of its kind in the world, the school's performances of classical dressage continue to bring in large crowds more than 450 years after its founding.

Culture

Beer culture in Belgium

Despite its small size, Belgium produces nearly 1,500 different types of beer. Some of the most popular are produced by Trappist monks, who donate their profits to charity. Beer is such a part of everyday life in Belgium that up until the 1960s, beer was an option at school lunches.

Culture

Kabuki theatre

Known for its elaborate make-up and stylized drama, Kabuki theatre originated in 17th century Japan and was originally performed only by women. Kabuki plays follow one of three categories — history, domestic tales, and dance pieces. The word kabuki can be roughly translated to "avant-garde."

France's Emmanuel Macron has joined the nation's bakers in calling for the baguette to be included on UNESCO's "intangible heritage" list. The traditional bread is "envied around the world," the president said.

The iconic French bread should be recognized by UNESCO as one of the world's cultural treasures and listed as "intangible heritage," France's President Emmanuel Macron said Friday.

Read more: Vive la baguette — from a drive-through

Macron voiced his support for the baguette's UNESCO bid while meeting representatives of the national confederation of baking and pastry at the Elysee presidential palace in Paris. The bakers launched the idea after UNESCO assigned the "intangible heritage" status to the special method of dough twirling practiced by pizza makers in Naples.

Read more: Pizza makes UNESCO 'intangible heritage' list

Macron said the baguette was "part of daily life in France," and that registering it with UNESCO would also include the ingredients and the method of making it, according to the French Europe1 radio station.

"I know our bakers, they saw the Neapolitans succeed in getting their pizza classified under UNESCO world heritage, and they said why not the baguette — and they are right!" Macron said.

Watch video 02:10
Now live
02:10 mins.
DW News | 08.12.2017

UNESCO adds Naples-style pizza to World Heritage list

'We must preserve its excellence'

The baguette is a crusty, long loaf of bread that serves as one of the most recognizable symbols of the nation's culture, alongside the Eiffel Tower. Macron described it as a "morning, midday and evening tradition for the French."

"The baguette is envied around the world. We must preserve its excellence and our expertise, and it is for this reason that it should be heritage-listed," he told the group of master bakers during the meeting.

The twirling of pizza dough made the UNESCO list in December, after 2 million people around the world signed the petition for its inclusion.

Culture

Surströmming

Some can't bring themselves to take a single bite. Due to the putrid stench, manufacturers advise that cans of Surströmming should only be opened underwater. The stinking Swedish fish ferments for weeks — a process that continues in the can, which bulges noticeably on the supermarket shelve. Allegedly, some airlines even prohibit the rotten fish on planes due to the risk of explosion.

Culture

Hákarl

The Greenland shark can grow up to 400 years old. Unless it ends up as hákarl on a plate. While the shark's meat is actually poisonous when fresh, it becomes edible if you bury it or let it rot in a box for weeks. Dubbed by some the worst tasting food in the world, hákarl has a rubbery consistency and an ammonia-like flavor. It's a traditional specialty in Iceland.

Culture

Bull testicles

Once they were a delicacy in Central Europe, but today bull testicles are only savored by experimental gourmands and very rarely appear on menus — or as in this photo, hidden in a salad. Which might be a pity, as connoisseurs describe the dish's very delicate consistency and a subtle nutty taste. In addition, bull testicles (known as Rocky Mountain oysters in the US) are rumored to boost libido.

Culture

Labskaus

The ingredients of this mariner's dish from Northern Germany are harmless: potatoes, beetroot, meat and fish. But after they are put through a meat grinder, it comes out looking like someone has just been sick. Labskaus is therefore often hidden under a fried egg. The specialty was born out of necessity — as sailors once lost their teeth due to vitamin deficiencies, their food had to be pureed.

Culture

Maggots cheese

A specialty on the Italian island of Sardinia, where it's known as Casu Marzu or "rotten cheese," flies lay eggs in the immature sheep's cheese before it becomes infested with live larvae, or maggots — which gives the cheese its incomparable taste. Though the delicacy is officially banned in the EU, many Sardinians do not want to give up this uniquely putrid pecorino cheese.

Related Subjects