World of Mouth: Blood and Oranges

09.03.2011                      03.Adar ll, 5771

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World of Mouth: Blood and Oranges

The column that brings you food festivals from around the world; this week why are the citizens of Ivrea, Italy hurling oranges at each other in a coordinated battle?

In Italy, the most common table orange is the Tarocco blood orange, called so because of the red pigmentation on its flesh and peel. The orange is a mutation of the sweet orange and has been cultivated in Sicily since the times of Moorish rule.
This week in the city of Ivrea in northwestern Italy, there will be a different combination of blood and oranges at the annual Carnevale d'Ivrea, the highlight of which is an enormous orange battle. From March 6-9, the citizens of Ivrea will be hurling oranges at each other in a coordinated fight that involves five different battlegrounds and thousands of people divided into nine teams of combatants. The oranges they throw are not blood oranges, but due to the violence of the event, there is sure to be a fair amount of blood mixed in with all that OJ….