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Ice and ice-cream

glace You can watch a short documentary recounting the story of Baltazar Ushca, a man who makes his living through the ice he gets out of Mt Chimborazo in Ecuador. He is the last person to do this job today, as people prefer to buy ready made ice blocks. He states how much he loves this difficult work, how superior ice from the glaciers is compared to the ready made one, and how he prays to God that his children and grandchildren will follow in his steps, unlike his brothers who had to abandon the job due to lack of demand. Watch him tie the pieces of ice with dexterity and pack them on his donkey.

The second video is an animation, made by a well known Italian ice-cream firm, which a year ago created in Bologna the Museum of ice-cream. The history of the ice-cream began in Mesopotamia 14 thousand years ago when the ice from the mountains provided an ingredient for the creation of refreshments for royal dinner parties. Later, the Romans used a special utensil through which the snow was filtered so that they could use it in their banquets, throwing it in goblets full of wine or water. The Arabs had something called shrb, a precursor of the shorbet, which is different than the ice-cream because it contains no milk.

According to a legend, Catherine of Medici and the alchemist Cosimo Ruggieri were the ones who invented ice-cream and introduced it to France where in 1686 the Sicilian owner of a café started offering it to his clients. In the next two centuries it will be spread all over Europe and will reach America. There, an Italian again will invent the waffel cone and at last the manufacturing of ice-cream will become mechanical and the whole world will get to know and love it.

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