Italian Food: Let’s Know More about Pasta and Pizza
The most widely recognized element of Italian food today is pasta. Pasta is a signature of Italian food in all parts of the globe. It is easy to store and prepare and therefore became the ambassador of Italian food to the world. Pasta has a much older history than other common dishes in Italian food like pizza and tomato sauce.
The other form of pasta used in Italian food is fresh pasta. All pasta actually starts out as fresh pasta but certain pasta recipes require that the pasta be eaten fresh and soft, not dried. Fresh pasta is often made with slightly different ingredients than dried pasta. In the northern parts of Italy fresh pasta is most often made with all-purpose flour and eggs. However, the southern parts of Italy make their fresh pasta with semolina and water. It should be noted that different recipes can call for different variations. These different recipes give a distinct flavor to the Italian food of different regions. Some types of pasta are meant just to be eaten fresh, while others are meant to be dried. There are also some types of pasta that can be fresh or dried; it depends on what Italian food dish is being prepared.
When a variation of pasta can be either dried or fresh it is sometimes argued that the fresh style is best. Making fresh pasta is a point of pride for many Italian households and is reflected in the quality of the Italian food that they prepare.
Italians eat pasta then any other country in the world and is considered the cornerstone of Italian food.
It was in the Middle Ages that pizza began to take a form that would be more familiar to Italian food lovers today. Pizza started out being just as dough topped with herbs and olive oil. Once mozzarella cheese began to be produced from Indian Water Buffalo it quickly became a signature aspect of pizza. Today at any true Italian food eatery this fresh mozzarella di buffalo is nonnegotiable. The dried shredded mozzarella that is often associated with Italian food would actually never be used on a pizza made by a true Italian food chef.
Traditional Italian pizza is cooked in a wood fired oven. The reason American pizza is often not thought of as a true Italian food is because the large restaurant chains that specialize in pizza do not cook it in a wood fired oven. Pizzas featured in Italian food restaurants should use only the freshest ingredients. In Italy pizzas change with the seasons as new ingredients become available. The great thing about pizza that has made it so popular is the fact that it can be topped with a vast array of toppings. Each region of Italy has its own particular style of pizza that they specialize in, making use of the ingredients most readily available to them.