White or colored, made with chocolate or even fine, the dragee is a candy that is generally offered at weddings. Where does this ancestral tradition come from?
The origins of the dragee
The ancestor of the dragee was born in France in 1220, precisely in Verdun. At the time, this was to meet the conservation needs of the fine. So that the fines did not deteriorate, the idea of coating them in sugar appeared. To this mixture, we added honey to stick it all together. From there, the dragee made a long journey before becoming the sweet treat which is known to all today and which is offered during weddings and baptisms.
The dragee thus made a leap to the East, via Holland. Of course, previously it was a real luxury that only the rich and the aristocrats could afford.
Over time, honey was replaced by cane sugar so that the dragee had its current appearance. Today, the trend with dragee is to play with colors so that this treat has a more aesthetic side.
Dragees, what do they symbolize?
It must be said that the dragee is the representation of the eternal love that two beings have for each other. The history of the dragee or rather that of the almond dates back to Greek mythology from the time of Phyllis and Demophon. When it came time to unite with “his rascal,” Demophon had to go on a long journey. Phyllis, the future bride, could not bear to live without her companion and died of grief.
Then, although the reasons are not known, the gods turned Phyllis into an almond tree. Her ex-future husband returned and when he found his bride in this state, he decided to make her an offering. The latter despite its appearance of a tree, showed its gratitude by blooming in the middle of winter. It is therefore from this moment that the almond became a symbol of fertility and love.
Why are sugared almonds offered at a wedding?
Since marriage is above all a day of happiness and celebration of love, the newlyweds offer their guests sweets as wishes, including longevity, fertility and prosperity. Tradition has it that we put five almond dragees per guest. However, it is not uncommon nowadays to discover dragees which are made with hazelnuts, meringue or even chocolate. It is true that in this case, we deviate from customs and beliefs. On the other hand, the trend is towards discovery and novelty.