Italian cuisine is among the most popular in the world. Many have adopted and declined it, in their own way. Ingredients never before used by Italians appeared on pizza, such as pineapple, beef or egg. Called “Hawaiian” or “Indian”, these pizzas are a far cry from the traditional Calzone or Regina. Are these new developments accepted on the mother earth of Margherita? To find out, we asked Italian chef Toni Muzi. His key word for our questions? ” Forbidden “. The color is announced: even small habits that we think are “Italian” correct are not. Here they are.
These habits that horrify Italians
Break the pasta before cooking
“Breaking the spaghetti before putting it in the water is forbidden for us (the Italians)” warns Toni Muzi before continuing: “the spaghetti are made to be left whole in the water during cooking, we Let the taste settle in and it’s ready.” It is therefore not necessary to use this trick to get them into the pan more quickly. Cooking pasta is simple, you might as well prepare it according to the rules of the art.
Cut the pasta onto the plate
Spaghetti is the least convenient pasta to eat. Once on the plate, it is tempting to cut them and yet, it is “forbidden”. Little tip for enjoying a dish of spaghetti without hassle and Italian style: use a tablespoon.
You may have already noticed that in restaurants, a spoon can be made available to those who order spaghetti. The reason ? “We could easily get dirty, because the spaghetti can splash the sauce everywhere, so yes, we use the spoon with the fork, it helps us to hold everything on top of the plate” explains Toni.
Many have already wondered about the origins of this practice and yet, eating a dish of spaghetti with a spoon is 100% Italian. Thanks to the spoon, you can order spaghetti on your first date (ask the waiter if it is not automatically present on the table).
Put pineapple on pizza
Pineapple pizza is by far the most debated pizza twist. Let’s end the suspense, pineapple pizza is not Italian.
As surprising as it may seem, this pizza, although called “Hawaiian”, was invented in 1962 by Sam Panopoulos, a Canadian of Greek origin. This former chef of a restaurant in Ontario would have added pineapple to a ham pizza “for a laugh”.
A joke taken very seriously, since many pizzerias have since offered it. An unexpected twist that will delight sweet/savory lovers. For the Italians, however, it is a completely different story. A “sacrilege” the chef responds when we mention this recipe. Used to preparing traditional Margherita and Neapolitan pizzas, pineapple has no place in pizza.
Prepare a cream-based carbonara
For many people, carbonara sauce is prepared with cream and bacon. Certainly, this recipe is the simplified version for cooking carbonara pasta and yet, it is not the right one. When asked for his opinion, Toni immediately corrects: “No no, carbonara is prepared without cream” before continuing with the real recipe for this Italian sauce: “we have pecorino, parmesan, water yolks, pasta cooking water, pepper and lots of love.”
Salmon pizza, the “authorized” exception
Although salmon pizza is not common in Italy, it is nonetheless prohibited. Chef Toni confirms this: “it’s true that we don’t make them a lot in Italy, but personally I’m not against putting salmon on a pizza”. From an Italian chef, no doubt, you can praise the merits of salmon pizza in Italy.
The only downside that the chef would attribute to this recipe: “salmon pizza goes very poorly with traditional cheeses like mozzarella”. For a salmon pizza to have the merit of existing, we add “arugula and lemon zest go quite well, with a ricotta base”. The texture of ricotta is light, unlike mozzarella which could camouflage the flavors of the salmon.