There may have been many movies with or about Italians and their beautiful country, but the one that comes to our minds right now is “Eat, Pray, Love” with Julia Roberts. At first sight, many people are tempted to say that Italian cuisine is all about pizza and pasta, because this is what they see in most movies about Italy. Little do you know, there are so many other mouthwatering dishes you need to try at least once in a lifetime!
Here’s a list of top five common myths on Italian food you should stop believing.
1. Pizza & Pasta All The Way – Have you ever found yourself asking Italians if all they eat is pizza and pasta? Well stop. It’s like telling an American that football and soccer are the same thing. Italian cuisine is much more varied than you’d believe. Check out this tuna tartare dish from Gina La Fornarina.
Tuna Tartare | Gina La Fornarina
2. “My pasta is undercooked” – Tell this to a waiter in an Italian restaurant and you will instantly strike a chord. There is no such thing as undercooked pasta according to Italians, there’s only “al dente”, which means that pasta is firmer to the bite. The truth is al dente dishes are much easier to digest.
Preparing Pasta | Il Melograno
3. Chicken and pasta go great together. – NEVER! In Italy, you will never find pasta with chicken on any Italian restaurant menu, it’s just something that the Americans came up with. Chicken and pasta are two separate dishes in Italian restaurants.
Chicken Margherita | Gina La Fornarina
4. Fettucine Alfredo is the best Italian pasta! – The truth is simply this: Fettucine Alfredo type of pasta doesn’t exist in Italy and no one will know what you’re talking about if you ask for Fettucine Alfredo pasta in an Italian restaurant. However, you can find this dish for other names, such as fettuccine al burro or pasta in bianco The name of the dish comes from its creator, Alfredo di Lelio. He ran a restaurant in Rome and when his pregnant wife was suffering from terrible nausea, he decided to cook something light for her – fresh-made pasta with Parmesan and butter. He added the dish to his restaurant’s menu, but it was only when he opened a new restaurant in the US that his dish became widely popular.
Spaghetti, Tomato & Basil | Gina La Fornarina
5. Always rinse the pasta. – Actually, there’s no strict rule about this. In fact, it is recommended to rinse the pasta after cooking it only if you plan to make a cold pasta salad. Otherwise, you will only rinse off the precious starches and the taste of your dish will not be “perfetto”.
Linguine & Lobster | Il Melograno