iRozhlas The world would be different without wine. Bake a rustic Italian grape pie

iRozhlas The world would be different without wine. Bake a rustic Italian grape pie

In the gastronomy of our kitchen, there are many things that seem so ordinary, natural and everyday to us that we don't even think about how it is possible that they exist at all, what the world would look like without them. Would humanity and its history go in a different direction? One of the miracles that the plant kingdom has served us is the wine grape. That ordinary grape of wine that you buy in every grocery store, every supermarket and every market.

GASTROGLOSA DAGMAR HEŘTVÉPrague Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedInPrintCopy url addressShortened addressClose

we discuss, we do art or science. The world, today's, modern one, would probably be much worse without wine.

Water versus wine

Only Jesus could turn water into wine, but he was not alone. For ancient peoples, this was often an existential question, so wine and fermented beer were consumed like water. In ancient times, use in the opposite guard took a heavy toll in the form of diseases and child mortality. It went so far that in famous cities like Babylon, Alexandria and Athens, diluted wine was drunk out of necessity, even given to infants.

Dagmar Heřtová

Food blogger and gastronomic journalist who regularly contributes to printed and online periodicals mainly with information about raw materials, their processing and recipes. On the website Tastejourney, he writes about food, new trends and shares gastronomic insights from his travels.

I can already hear the voices of the believers of the best mok in the world, how nice it would be to receive wine from diapers. Know that it wasn't, but when it comes to survival, a lot of sins are tolerated.

Water has not been used on roses for centuries, it served well and without problems outside in nature, but even at the beginning of the 17th century, water was a symbol of falsity and lies. The famous Shakespeare even used this prejudice in Othello, where one of the lines from her: "... she was false as water."

That's the end of it. Water does not deserve something similar, and what it was compared to, and how it looked then, was the work of man and his inappropriate hygienic habits.

I am happy that our taps are flowing today and that quality, drinkable water is available in stores. On the other hand, the state of that time made wine popular and today nothing will take away from its importance.

Where did the grape come from

According to known records and evaluation of archaeological finds, the first domesticated grapes were grown in the territory of present-day Georgia in the Caucasus region. We are talking about a timeline of about 6000 BC. 2000 years later, wine is already grown in Egypt, grapes are also depicted in the hieroglyphs of Egyptian tombs. The importance and position of wine is also evidenced by the discovery of red wine in the pyramid of Pharaoh Tutankhamun. He certainly had a good reason for taking jugs of wine with him on his perilous afterlife journey through the underworld.

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There was not so much wine in Egypt, so they brought it from Greece, from where it also went west. The cultivation of the vine thus spread across the Mediterranean, and the Italians, French, and Spanish should pay tithes to the Greeks for what they had bestowed upon them.

iRazhlas The world would be different without wine. Bake a rustic Italian cake with grapes

However, I must point out that the Phoenicians also have a lot to do with this. The Romans were also active in world trade at the time, and by the 2nd century AD, the vineyards established in the Rhine Valley had become a major wine producer in Europe. After the fall of the Roman Empire, mainly monasteries took over the baton of wine growing, when the use of wine for religious purposes spread.

Grapes and their secondary product, wine, have taken over the world, they have affected all areas of humanity, they have their place in art, warfare, philosophy, but especially in culinary arts.

To honor the wine, I raise a virtually full glass and I have prepared a recipe for you from the grapes, at the time of their collection, full of flavors and aromas of the ending summer.

Italian inspiration

I reach for the Italian kitchen, where rustic pies with grape wine abound. They are not fancy cakes, but simple cakes with olive oil and butter, with coarsely ground almond flour to give the dough texture. Whole grain or spelled flours also add rusticity.

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In today's recipe, grape wine is not spared, it is added to the dough and on top of the cake. However, I have one note: use only seedless grapes, think about the comfort of consumption. And if you're wondering what's so special about grape cakes, I'll be quick to answer. They are extremely juicy, supple and taste great like grapes.

After all, who says pies only have to be apple, cherry, pear, apricot, plum or strawberry? Yes, I like them all, but grapes are in a different class. So enjoy!

I was inspired by winemakers, and the recipe could be called "Winemaker's cake", which fully corresponds to its content. And I repeat: don't skimp on the grapes and it doesn't matter what you use: white, dark, pink, they just have to be seedless.

Rustic cake with dark grapes


for a 20-22 cm round fluted form


First, preheat the oven to 180 °C. Beat eggs and sugar in the bowl of a food processor and gradually add melted butter, olive oil, cream and finely grated lemon zest. Next, sprinkle flour with mixed baking powder, almond flour and combine everything into a smooth dough.

Let it sit for 10 minutes so that the flour absorbs the liquid and the dough thickens. Grease the cake pan with butter and sprinkle with flour.

Now mix most of the washed grapes lightly into the dough, smooth and bake in the oven for 10 minutes. Then sprinkle the rest of the grapes on top of the cake and sprinkle with cane sugar. Return to the oven and bake for another 30 to 35 minutes, until the cake is completely done. We test it with a toothpick, if it's dry, it's done.

Transfer to a metal grid and let cool. Serve as is or add sour cream or white yogurt.

Dagmar HeřtováShare on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on LinkedInPrintCopy url addressShortened addressClose