Italy is among the most populous countries in Europe, located in the heart of Mediterranean Sea. Italy cuisine has taken heavy influences from ancient years to the modern world.
It is well known for its diversity in the 20 regions of Italy, abundance of difference in taste and regarded to be among the most popular in the world, creating influence abroad. The Mediterranean diet creates the foundation of Italian cuisine which is represented by its ultimate simplicity and variation with most dishes having about 4 to 8 ingredients.
Among the abundant varieties of cultural bits, the Italian cuisine is a great way to experience the feasts the imperial class of Italy has enjoyed for thousands of years. The meticulous preparations and attention to detail that goes into the food creates a top notch culinary experience, from home cooked cuisines to premium cuisines.
History of Italian Cuisine
Italian cuisine has developed over the centuries, claiming traceable roots as far as the 4th century BC.
Dishes and also recipes are frequently derivatives from the local and familiar traditions rather than credited chefs hence most recipes are ideally matched for home cooking thus being the prime motive behind the always rising global popularity of the Italian cuisine.
The most important factor in the prosperity of the Italian style of cooking is its heavy reliance on their traditional products!
Whether you are a gourmet traveler or not, the 20 regions of Italy are all loaded with special Italian cuisines to satisfy all tastes.
There is rich and diverse food culture across the regions. Every dish even the most simple; has roots in the past and tradition of that particular region. While travelling from north to south, you could experience as many different dishes as you traveled around the continent.
Normally, there are different variations on the dining experience, but throughout of Italy the traditional menu consists of antipasto, closing with dessert, followed by caffé and ammazza-caffé.
Classic antipasti are usually made of charcuterie, cheese, pickles and whatever the matriarch comes up with. They are usually served prior the pasta.
The main course is split into two, primo and secondo (first and second courses) where primo usually constitutes starches like the risotto, pasta or gnocchi. Traditionally, pasta is freshly hand-made on the same day.
Secondo is normally the main course which constitutes meat, ranging from pork to fish or beef with the lamb and goats are found during the holidays on menus while chicken regarded as home fare.
A few cheese usually close the main part of the lunch.
But the fun has still to come where Sunday lunches go to the long distance with dessert that has endless possibilities (tiramisu, pannacotta, cannobi), fruits, coffee and ammazza-caffe.
Diversity of Italian Cuisine
Perhaps no other country in the world has a cooking style so finely fragmented into different divisions.
So why is Risotto typically of Milan, Tortellini originate from Bologna and pizza so popular in Naples?
Italy is a country of great variety and Italian cooking is just another aspect of the diversity of Italian culture stemming largely from peasant heritage and geographical differences.