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The Basics Of Italian Food Ingredients

Updated on October 27, 2009

When it comes to good food, the Italians immediately come to mind. It is no secret that Italians love to eat. Perhaps their main claim to culinary fame is because they are experts in concocting the best-tasting dishes from the simplest ingredients.

Italy is an extremely diverse country and this is reflected in Italian food. Italian food is so diverse that you would think that they come from different countries. Italian food cannot be the best if cooks don't use the freshest ingredients. Hence, the diversity. The ingredients that are available in certain parts of the country are those that are the freshest. If in one area, butter is the staple, then most dishes are butter-based. If there is more olive oil, then most dishes will be cooked in olive oil.

Italian food is often synonymous with pasta. Pasta is a superlative food product for Italians because it doesn't require expensive ingredients to create a delicious meal. All you need are pasta, which are noodles made from flour and water and sometimes eggs, and the ingredients for the sauce. Tomatoes are mostly used in sauces for pasta. They are cooked fresh and in large quantities. Indeed, Italian food would seem incomplete without a tomato-based dish.

Aside from pasta, pizza is also a popular Italian dish. It is made of baked dough topped with tomato sauce, cheese, vegetables and meat. The usual vegetables included in pizza would be bell pepper, olives, and tomatoes. Meat would vary from pepperoni, sausages, anchovies and even different seafood.

Cheese is also an integral part of Italian food. Italians love to use parmesan and mozzarella on their dishes. This helps bring out the flavors in Italian food, and it adds to the different textures of the dishes.

Dining on Italian food is an experience you won't be able to forget. It is a combination of so many factors, all of them wonderful and delicious. Italian food is rich in flavors because Italians cook the dishes using a vast array of herbs and spices. This is perhaps one of the secrets of a good Italian cook. For hundreds of years Italians have improvised and improved depending on the availability of the freshest ingredients. Italian food becomes such a sumptuous meal because of the Italian instinct for great cuisine: They have a knack for flavors. They know which herbs to use to bring out the tangy taste of tomatoes. They have a sixth sense on what spices to add to neutralize the pungent taste of Puttanesca. When you apply such great culinary genius over a period of centuries, you end up with what can arguably be called the greatest cuisine in the world.

Italian food is easy to prepare once you get the hang of it. All you have to do is use the freshest ingredients, and cook according to the traditional ways. Maximize herbs and spices to bring out the flavors of your dishes. You can easily whip up a delicious Italian meal on a budget, which is extremely important in this day and age. Meat has traditionally been considered a luxury for Italians, so they have mastered ways to bring out spectacular flavors without costing a fortune. Vegetables and spices give Italian dishes that added impact that is so satisfying and so memorable. And because Italian food is so versatile, you can always come up with variations on your recipes which are deeply rooted in Italian culinary heritage.

If there is one thing that Italians love to do, it is going all out when it comes to eating well. Buon Appetito!

Continued In: The Basics Of Italian Cooking Recipes

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    • profile image


      7 years ago

      some of these sound nice i need to try them

    • profile image

      "Italian food fan" 

      8 years ago

      All the best times I've had with food were when I took a two week trip to Italy (which is definitely not enough time for a beautiful place like that). I think the fact that they use cheese all the time, like you mentioned, is why I love their food even that much more. I certainly haven't forgotten my Italian cuisine experience.

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      Authentic Italian Recipes 

      8 years ago

      Italian food is one of the BEST food cuisines due to the fact that there is a lot of natural foods used. It is these ingredients that blend together making the incredible flavors we have learned is Italian Cooking!


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