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Supposedly Italian…

November 24, 2010
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By BrokenSphere, via Wikimedia Commons

I already wrote about food that many Americans believe is German but really isn’t (like German chocolate cake). When Marco read that post he said I need to tell you guys about some food that people think is Italian, but that Italians have never heard of. The foods below might not all have “Italian” in the name, but many Americans believe they are Italian nonetheless. Most Italian food I have had here in the US is really American-Italian food. And some of it is really good 🙂 Anyways, the best example of a supposedly Italian food? Alfredo sauce. I know that people here in the US love it and I really think it’s not bad, but Italian it is not. Sorry! They don’t even have it over there.

via Wikimedia Commons

Another one? How about lasagna. Well, of course they have lasagna in Italy. However, it does not contain Ricotta cheese. Italian lasagna is made with Béchamel sauce instead. And it’s delicious!

Italian dressing? Nope, not from Italy. Most Italians eat their salad with olive oil, vinegar, and salt.

By Shot_by_Cam, via Wikimedia Commons

Spaghetti and meatballs? No. There are spaghetti and there are meatballs, but they are not combined into one dish in Italy.

Yes, Parmesan is Italian. But don’t ask them to add it on your salad in Italy. A friend of ours asked for it when travelling through Italy and the waiter flat out refused 🙂

I’m sure there are more supposedly Italian dishes, but right now I can’t think of them. Can you? Share it with me in the comment section!

Buon appetito!

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  • Ana O'Reilly says:

    Great post!

    A while ago a TV chef from Italy did a series of shows devoted to pseudo-Italian food in South America. It was fun to watch! We have “canelones (cannelloni) a la Rossini” The dish was invented in Uruguay for the famous composer Rossini but is unknown in Italy, although we think we’re eating an authentic Italian dish!
    Ana O’Reilly recently posted..Photo essay- French influence on the architecture of Buenos Aires

    • Sabrina says:

      Thanks Ana! Too funny about the canelones. I guess every country makes Italian dishes their own. In Germany, pretty much every restaurant will serve a “pizza tonno” (pizza with thuna) and everybody thinks that it’s very Italian 🙂 I found out that it’s actually pretty rare in Italy.

  • Andrew says:

    Pizza Hawaii seems far more American than Italian, but I’ve even seen it in Italy.

    Germans put the word Bologenese for any type of meat n tomato sauce and will put it on anything. We have potatoes bologenese. However going to Bologna, the only place you get ragu (same sauce) is on taglitelle; never on tortellini, which I actually ate for lunch here on Monday.

    On the other end I saw a pizza with fries and wurstchen on it in Liguria. That was really weird to me.
    Andrew recently posted..Beautiful Soup

    • Sabrina says:

      So true! I was very shocked to find out from my boyfriend (Italian) when we were first dating that the term Bolognese sauce is actually called “al ragu” in Italian. Growing up in Germany, I would have sworn it was the most Italian thing on the planet 🙂

      By the way, I looooove pizza Hawaii! Not sure what I’d do with the fries and wurstchen on the pizza. Maybe eat them first? You got me curious though. Was there also tomato sauce on it and cheese?

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