If there is another international cuisine as popular as Chinese cuisine in India, it must be Italian. Pizza and pasta are an integral part of our eating habits and are often present in many cafes and restaurants across the country. However, despite their popularity, some notions commonly associated with Italian cuisine are far from true. It’s time these myths were debunked!
1. Italian food is bland
India is a country that loves its spices and when used in Indian preparations, these spices are a riot of flavors. However, Italian cuisine believes in bringing out the most authentic and original taste of the ingredients used in a recipe. For example, if tomatoes are used in a dish, it is important to retain the flavor of the tomato when making an Italian preparation. Food, which many consider bland, actually tries to tingle the taste buds, allowing the person consuming a dish to clearly identify the various ingredients that make up the dish.
2. Italian cuisine = pasta and pizza
Italian cuisine is popular all over the world for its pasta and pizza, but Italian cuisine includes many other appetizing dishes like Brasato (a wine-based stew), gnocchi (potato-based pasta), Fritti (fried appetizers), Risotto, etc. Even the types of pasta, pizza and risotto vary from region to region. Just like the biryani in India, which has completely different avatars in different parts of the country, Italian cuisine also has different variations of their dishes, which signify the region they represent. In addition to enjoying a good Italian meal, it would be interesting to also discover the roots and the culture that an Italian dish brings.
3. Italian dishes are creamy and rich
Every accomplished chef will invariably declare that cream is an ingredient used by under-prepared chefs to mask preparation errors. Contrary to popular belief, cream is a rare ingredient that is rarely used when preparing Italian dishes. The sauce that people know as white sauce is actually a cheese sauce made with cheese and milk (and little eaten in Italy). It also validates that the authentic form of Italian cuisine is not unhealthy at all.
(Cooking with olive oil and other healthy oils. Buy them here)
4. My pasta seems undercooked
It is a common complaint from people who are unfamiliar with al dente that food prepared in the al dente style is undercooked. However, this form of Italian cooking requires the pasta to be firm to the bite, and the slightly crunchy texture of al dente dishes makes it easy to digest, making it a healthier option.
5. Wash this pasta well
It is an Indian custom to wash fruits, vegetables and grains before cooking them. But it’s important to keep in mind that Italian cuisine is different. Pasta should never be washed before boiling or it will lose all of its starch and healthy nutrients will be lost. When picking a pack of pasta, it is imperative to select a good brand that would not require rinsing.
About the Author:
Chef Marou is the new Italian Executive Chef at Alto Vino, the international restaurant at the Bengaluru Marriott Hotel, Whitefield. Chef Marou has an extensive 13-year experience in the industry and is an expert in his genre of Italian cuisine. He started his career in 2003 as an intern, then grew to become the Italian Sous Chef in 2011 at the Grand Hyatt, Muscat. He is an eloquent personality with a positive attitude towards life.Warning:
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