I am back from Italy and currently in a food slump. I ate too much, feel like I went up a dress size, AND I’m finding myself paying too much for food in Australia and not being nearly as satisfied as I was with my 6euro pasta in Italy! The trip was amazing, I can barely put it into words. Seeing Pompeii was breathtaking and only deepened my love of history. Seeing Capri and the Blue Grotto was also beautiful – an unexpected add-on to the trip but I’m so glad I got to experience it.
I’m in the process of writing about my foodie travels in Italy, but until then I thought I’d share some valuable lessons about food that I gained during my travels.
- Spaghetti should never be served in a Bolognese sauce – this really threw me as I always make spaghetti bolognese. Well-known Italian chef Antonio Carluccio says that this is more of a “Western” add-on. He also says when cooking a Bolognese sauce you shouldn’t add herbs or garlic – instead, the intensity of the flavour should come from the meat
- Continuing on from Point #1, a general rule when matching sauces to types of pasta is the smoother the pasta, the thinner the sauce; the rougher the outside of the pasta, the thicker of the sauce.
- Having a dinner party and not sure how much pasta to cook? If the pasta is a starter aim for 50g dried pasta per person. For larger portions (i.e. as a main), cook 110g of pasta per person
- Don’t leave any food on your plate! We did this a couple of times whilst in Italy and the waiters were concerned we didn’t enjoy the food – we had to tell them we had just eaten so much already!
- When it comes to draining the pasta always save a cup of cooking water and never rinse the pasta – this washes away too much of the starch coating
- Preheat the serving bowl as well as individual bowls. Always have a deep plate for pasta. This is a nice tip that just somehow makes the pasta feel even more homely
- Good Italian wine goes with any good Italian dish! You should know this by now! 🙂
If you have any other tips feel free to fire away in the comments below!