When we hear the word “Italy”; the first images that cross our mind are ancient Rome, picturesque country-side, magnificent churches and “Pizzas”!
Yes, the country, apart from being a cultural and religious hub, is very well-known for some of its mouth-watering dishes (and also wines)!
In fact, Italian food is so famous that nowadays you will find “Italian restaurants” in almost every part of the world. Though, the food served here is nowhere near to what you can call as authentic cuisine!
Unlike, the popular belief, typical Italian cuisine is not just limited to Pizzas (which again gets a local touch), Pasta, tiramisu or spaghetti!
In fact, these dishes are prepared in totally different manner in an average Italian kitchen.
So, to get the real feel of these delicious dishes, you need to get certain facts clear in your mind! Here, we will try to debunk some of the myths or say wrong ideas that have always being associated with the Italian food.
Italian Pizzas – Unlike their American counterparts (or for that matter any other global counterpart); the Italian ones are fluffy and have a fine thin crust; also they are not oily! Most of the time, it is baked on wooden ovens. This gives you a speckled crust by bubbles bursting on it. And the center part is fluffy and saucy. And the toppings are used sparingly; you probably won’t find much variety unlike the American version. They usually have mozzarella, peeled tomatoes and other stuff like bell peppers, salami and vegetables.
One more thing the Garlic Bread is also not a part of the typical Italian cuisine. Instead, you will get bruschetta! They are finger-sized toast sprinkled with fresh olive oil or garlic oil, basil and chopped tomatoes.
Dressings forms a very important part of the Italian dish – They are very simple. No sauces, no cream. All it needs is salt, pepper, vinegar, olive oil and garlic or onion depending on what you are using the dressing. Sauces are prepared only for some very specific dishes; it is never used as dressing. Also cream, it too is not used as dressing, unlike some popular belief.
Sauces – The one you get in so-called “Italian restaurant” is nowhere close to the authentic you will find in an average household. Contrary to the popular notion; these sauces are not heavy or fattening. They are mainly prepared with tomato with or without garlic, onion, carrot or spinach depending on the region. Moreover, it is treated as condiment, so it sprinkled moderately.
Pasta with Chicken is not an Italian concept – You will find many restaurants serving it. But pasta as an authentic cuisine is never served with chicken. In fact Pasta tastes best, when served alone, since it is already cooked with herbs and spices. Moreover, the Italians do not treat it as a side-dish so, for them it does not require any condiments like chicken or salad to go along with it.
By the way, spaghetti with meatballs is not a traditional dish. It is more of American –Italian! Italians are not very fond of meat, except in few areas, it not even used in any of their cuisine.
Wrapping up, the Italian food is rich combination of various food stuff cooked with a variety of herbs, vegetables and Olive Oil. You will get the real taste only when you have an idea about what it is all about. This article basically shows the traditional elements that go missing from the so-called Italian food.