8 Dec 2016

Ten Things You May Not Know About Italian Food

Ah, Italy. The food joys you have given the rest of the world are countless. Pizza, pasta and general carbohydrates. 
Got a trip to Italy planned? We've put together a list of our top 10 things we didn’t know about Italian food: 

Mind your P’s! Some people get tricked when they’re in Italy and want a little extra meat on their pizza, ending up with more than they bargained for. Peperoni with one ‘p' is pepper and pepperoni with two 'p's is the meat you’re after. 

There’s Pizza Police in Naples. We’re not kidding! There’s a certification body in Italy who make sure that the right flour is used, there’s no chemicals in the water and ONLY San Marzano (the best tomatoes in the world) are used. The pizza dough also must be made by hand (no rolling pins allowed) and the oven must be wood-fired. Not asking much, really. 

No cheese allowed. Adding cheese to a fish pasta is seen as an a-grade travesty in some Italian areas. Best not to risk it incase the nonnas turn on you. 

Dairy is a disaster. Traditional carbonara actually isn’t made with cream but olive oil, eggs, pancetta and the usual peppery suspects. Who started the cream trend? Probably an egg shortage somewhere along the line. 

The sauce must match the pasta. The different shapes and sizes of pasta isn’t just to confuse us at Coles - there’s a point to them all. If you have a smooth sauce, you need a thin pasta like spaghetti. If you’ve got a bit of body to the sauce, use a short pasta with a bit of shape so you can scoop it all up. 

Put down your utensils. You’ll look like a fool if you whip out your knife and fork to eat a real Italian pizza. The correct way is this: grab the two crust corners, fold the pizza slightly and tuck in. No awkward pinkie in sight. 

‘Italian’ dressing isn’t real. At least in Italy, anyway. It was just something that America made up to sell bottles of mixed balsamic vinegar. Real dressing in Italy is just a simple olive oil. 

Sit. If you’re eating and you’re walking, be prepared to receive some dirty looks from the locals. It’s considered rude to eat and walk - because in typical Italian style, they believe if someone’s taken time to prepare food for you the least you can do is sit and enjoy it properly. 

Coffee has a time and a place. And cappuccinos are an absolute no-go after breakfast. It’s black coffee or wine after 9am, folks. 

Italians invented the ice-cream cone. Let’s have a minute silence in thanks. 

If you want to see a real Italian cook some authentic and delicious food head to our Italian Collection here.


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