But what if I told you that some of your favourite dishes were not actually Italian? And that they were so far from being Italian that Italian natives have no idea what you’re talking about.
Try to order one of these in the heart of Italy and you’re bound to get one of two outcomes:
- You receive something that isn’t remotely like what you thought you were ordering
- You receive a look of sheer disappointment from your waiter, a disbelief in what you just asked for, and potentially a brief lecture on what is and is not actually Italian food.
This would also be a bad time to ask for pineapple on your pizza as that could be the straw that broke the camels back and result in you being asked to leave.
Let’s be honest though, you’d only have yourself to blame for that one..
So without further ado, here are the 4 most heartbreaking realisations surrounding Italian food!
I’ve decided to just rip the bandage off and start with a big one. Pepperoni Pizza. You heard it here first folks. It’s not Italian.. Not even close.
In fact, if you order a pepperoni pizza in Italy, you’ll be faced with option one above. With a lovely, fresh, vegetarian bell-pepper pizza being served up to you!
That’s right. Peperoni, dropping one P, is Italian for Bell Peppers. So in this case, you’ll get exactly what you asked for, but not what you intended!
Pepperoni pizza is an American thing. It originated in the states and although it has spread far and wide, it certainly won’t be forcing any Italians to give up their traditions.
So there you have it, unless you’re very keen on a good bell-pepper pizza, then don’t order a pepperoni pizza in Italy!
What could be more Italian than garlic bread? Am I right? The buttery, crispy, fluffy masterpiece that just pairs so perfectly with any pasta or sauce!
I’ve got bad news for you.. It’s not Italian.
It is quite common for bread to be served with all kinds of Italian dishes, but they are almost always baked plain and served plain, not even with butter.
Another dish popularised by the USA that shook Italy to its core.
If I was to give an example of Italy’s view of Fettuccine Alfredo in a way that the Irish market could understand – Imagine serving someone a tall glass of flat 7UP, them thinking it’s the bees-knees and going home to tell everyone about the delicious new drink they discovered.
That’s basically it!
Pasta In Bianco is Italians’ answer to flat 7UP; a dish consisting of plain pasta to soothe aching stomachs, with a bit of butter and grated parmesan added to make it somewhat palatable.
When Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks visited Alfredo’s restaurant and saw him serving his nauseous pregnant wife Pasta In Bianco, they requested that same dish and it blew their minds!
Thus they brought the “recipe” back to the states with them and the rest is history.
We’ve written about this before in our post on How To Drink Coffee Like An Italian.
There are a few common misconceptions about coffee in Italy. Your mind will be particularly blown if you primarily get your caffeine fix at Starbucks.
I say that because a macchiato is not what you think it is. The global coffee chain has butchered the humble caffé macchiato by convincing you it is a giant coffee, filled with all sorts of syrups, flavourings and whipped cream. It’s not.
A café macchiato is simply a “stained” coffee. That is, a shot of espresso stained with a small dollop of fresh milk foam. Delicious and strong!
It’s a much different coffee culture in Italy. Coffee’s are generally just strong shots of espresso, with the exception of having a cappuccino in the morning.
Take note, that a cappuccino is a breakfast drink. It’s very heavy and often paired perfectly with a little pastry. Do not try to order a cappuccino with lunch, or after dinner or basically any time that’s not breakfast.
The Italian Kitchen
So there we have it, four of the most common misconceptions surrounding Italian food.
One thing I think we can all agree on, however, is that whether it’s considered a classic Italian or a Western rip-off, it’s delicious either way! There’s a reason Italian food is so famous around the world and if you’re looking to experience authentic Italian cooking then look no further than the Italian Kitchen, the best Italian restaurant in North Dublin!
Reserve your table now and experience the award-winning authentic Italian cuisine.
The Italian Kitchen at Clayton Hotel Dublin Airport, Stockhole Lane, Swords, Co Dublin