Nothing can match the unique taste of authentic Italian cuisine in Musical Box Museum. For the people who are having it for the first time or the people who enjoy the dishes regularly, they would find a connection to the richness of Italian food, if the food made well. If not properly made, they can also tell the difference in the taste of the food and just by their appearance.
To make Italian food from scratch and making it good can be a daunting task for any newcomers and old veterans in Musical Box Museum. The newcomers don’t want to ruin the dishes, and the veterans want to stick true to the authentic taste that the dish offers. One of the unique things, if not, the most important unique thing, about Italian dishes are the carefully selected ingredients that go into making one. Every ingredient in an Italian dish is carefully examined to know the true nature of the ingredients, where it lacks flavor, what other ingredients can fill up that space with its own flavor.
It is the job of an Italian chef in Musical Box Museum to know all of these things beforehand to execute in the kitchen without any mistake. Ingredients such as Olive oil, it gets used in Italian food all the time. It adds the authenticate taste of an Italian dish and also by being healthy to consume. There is a saying that cooking with ingredients that are taken from the same region will result in a better taste.
The Influences of Italian Cooking
Garlic, pasta, tomatoes, basil add the true nature of an Italian dish to the surface. What is so fascinating about these ingredients, that they are very common, and on the right hand they can bring more to the dish than thousands of rare material combined. A clove of garlic will bring all the hidden flavors from the dish, but can’t say the same thing to jarred garlic. Tomatoes, nearly every pizza, and spaghetti ever made on this planet have used tomatoes in one way or another. Basil, is another iconic ingredient in making Margherita pizza. There is a reason why the word basil is synonymous with King of herbs.
Another widely used ingredient in the Italian dishes are Rosemary, basil may be called King of herbs, but rosemary is known to be the queen. Rosemary really shines in a perfectly made risotto.
No Italian dish in Musical Box Museum would complete without the inclusion of wine. Wine in an Italian culture takes a significant role in making the cuisines and adds many more flavors to the dish. The wine gets used in the Italian dish is drinking wines, not cooking ones. If any ingredient doesn’t bring its own flavor then it is better left alone. Adding wine to a dish has long been a cultural identity for the Italians. If the wine isn’t fit to drink, then it would be no use in the making of an Italian dish, if used, then it wouldn’t be a genuine Italian product.
Italian cuisine is as varied as the regions of Italy. Although Italy was officially unified in 1861, the food reflects the cultural variety of the country's regions with culinary influences from Greece, Roman, Gallic, Germany, Turkish, Hebrew, Slavic, Arab, Chinese and other civilizations. In this sense, there really is no one Italian cuisine because each area boasts of its own specialties. Not only is the food of Italy highly regionalized, but a high priority is also placed on the use of fresh available produce.
Although traditional Italian dishes vary by region, they also do not follow strictly to a North/South pattern either. The north tends to use more butter, creams, polenta, mascarpone, grana padano and Parmigiano cheeses, risotto, lasagna and fresh egg pasta, while the south is more tomato and olive oil based cooking, along with mozzarella, caciocavallo and peconrino cheeses, and dried pasta. Coastal and central regions often use tortellini, ravioli and prosciutto in their cooking. Even pizza varies across the country. In Rome the crusts are thin and cracker-like, while Neapolitan and Sicilian pizzas have a thicker crust.
For most Italians, pasta is the first course in a meal with the exception of the far north where risotto or polenta is the norm. Vegetables, grains and legumes play a regular part of many Italian diets with meat often not being a regular part of everyday meals, Olive oil is usually seen in its dark green state (from its first pressing) in the south, where in the north a more refined, golden oil is seen.
Basically, Italian cuisine consists of a combination of vegetables, grains, fruits, fish, cheeses and a some meats, with fowl and game usually seasoned or cooked with olive oil (with the exception of the far north). La cucina povera, the food of the poorer Italian people of the southern coastal area, has shaped a diet popular for centuries but now there is a resurgence of this "poor people's food", the Mediterranean diet, which is now being touted as the model around which we should restructure our eating habits.
Breakfast is considered a minor meal in Italy, often consisting of nothing more than a bread roll and milky coffee (café latte). Traditional lunches tend to be larger, have several courses and are eaten slowly. Italian children don't go to school in the afternoon, and because of the heat, many small businesses close from midday until about 4pm which makes lunch the social meal of the day.
The traditional menu structure in Italy consists of basically eight courses, but the long traditional Italian menu is typically kept for special occasions such as weddings, with everyday fare including only the first and second courses, with the side dish being served with the second course. As an exception to this order, a unique course, Piatto unico, can replace the first or second course with, for example, pizza.
The traditional menu consists of:
1. ANTIPASTO - which are hot or cold appetizers, literally it means "before the pasta"; consists of a varied combination of colorful foods. The most popular ingredients are melon or tomatoes served with prosciutto cut into very thin slices. Lettuce, such as the slightly bitter endives or rocket, or other green leaves, such as the aniseed-tasting fennel, are typically used as a garnish, placed around the edges of the serving dish. Salami, mortadella, coppa and zampone, manufactured meat products, are common in antipasti. The artistry of the food is as important to Italians as the taste. For example the reddish colour of salami provides a good contrast to the green lettuce. Fish and other seafood may also be used in the antipasti course and, of course, olives and artichokes are also common servings, as are mushrooms (fungi) seasoned with salt, pepper and lemon juice.
2. PRIMO (first course) - which usually consists of a hot dish such as pasta, risotto, gnocchi, polenta or soup, with many vegetarian options. There are many types of pasta, each type usually named after its shape with common types including spirali (spirals), farfalle (butterflies; sometimes described as 'bow-tie-shaped'). Penne (hollow tubes) and conchiglie (shells). Different shapes are supposed to be better with the different types of sauces. Spirals are two strips of pasta twirled around each other and are used with the heavier sauces, such as those containing minced meat and vegetables. Rigatoni is cylinders or tubes, with a wide diameter and grooves (or lines) on the outside. The grooves are supposed to hold the sauce onto the pasta, meaning that this pasta is good with runnier sauces. Then there is the group of pasta made up of long thin strands, which includes the most common type of pasta, spaghetti. Typically you eat this type of pasta by coiling its long thin strands around a fork. Other long thin pastas are tagliatelle, fettuccine and linguini, which are all varieties of flattened spaghetti. Extremely thin strands of pasta are called vermicelli (meaning 'little worms'). Yet another group of pasta is made of flat sheets (lasagna) or tubes (cannelloni), which are either layered or stuffed with meat and cheese fillings. Some pastas have 'pockets' to hold the sauce inside them instead of outside like ravioli or tortellini, which are soft sheets of pasta rolled around meat or cheese. Italians cook pasta of all kinds, whether fresh or dried, in boiling water until al dente ('to the teeth', meaning still a tiny bit hard in the centre. It is then served immediately in a bowl with sauce or cheese.
3. SECONDO (second course) - this is usually the main dish of fish or meat. Veal, pork and chicken are traditionally the most common and are often pan-fried or casseroled. Beef is used as steaks (bistecca), while lamb (agnello) is roasted on special occasions, such as Easter and Christmas. Fish and other seafood are often used as main courses.
4. CONTORNO (side dish) - this may be a salad or cooked vegetable. Salad is traditionally served with the main course. Common vegetables are beans (greens and pulses), potatoes (often sautéed), and carrots as well as salads.
5. FORMAGIIO AND FRUTTA (cheese and fruit) - this is the first dessert course and the fruit and cheese are usually served together. Grapes, peaches, apricots and citrus fruits are a major product of Italy's agricultural industry and are common.
6. DOLCE (dessert) - the cakes and cookies course Italians produce many sweet desserts and 'sweet treats', including Amaretti, almond-flavoured meringues, which Australians call macaroons, Panforte, a sweet semi-hard 'strong bread' based on nuts and containing dried fruit (a classic Christmas treat from Siena), and. Pannettone, a very rich bread-cake (another Christmas treat).
7. CAFFÉ (coffee) - which is usually espresso coffee
8. DIGESTIVE (liqueurs) - which may be grappa, amaro, or Limon cello. The wine industry has been important to Italy for centuries and the most common drink associated with Italy is wine. Until recently, and even now in the countryside, most Italians would make their own red or white house wine after the grape harvest. This would be drunk at every lunch and dinner. Even children are given wine to drink, but it is usually watered down with mineral water. Before dinner many Italians drink an amaro (bitter) to stimulate the digestive system, while after dinner they may drink sweet wines, such as marsala (from Sicily). Children are also sometimes given Marsala, beaten with a raw egg and sugar into zabaglione, to strengthen them.
Modern pizza has evolved from pizzas made by peasants in Naples, Italy, but more than a few Mediterranean peoples can claim to have 'invented' the pizza. In ancient times many civilizations created dishes of flat bread with various herbs and toppings. As a staple for the poor, it was a matter of necessity that food could be eaten without utensils, and that the 'plate' it was served on could be eaten as well. They made a bread crust from flour, water and yeast, topped it with olive oil, herbs, cheeses, sometimes even leftovers, and baked the whole thing in a stone oven.
Given that most pizza connoisseurs today consider the tomato sauce to be the key ingredient, it may be surprising that pizza pre-dates the introduction of tomatoes to Europe. Tomatoes reached Italy by way of Spain in the early 1500s but were thought to be poisonous. It was several decades later that tomatoes topped a flatbread in the form of a pizza.
Italian cuisine is very popular in all its forms and is imitated all over the world. Wouldn't you like to include Italian cuisine in your kitchen today?
Cooking with these ingredients in a perfectly well manner style to bring out the richness of the ingredient is like learning a new language by normal interaction. The more you interact with others, the more you will get better at speaking. The same method can be applied here, learning Italian cuisine is a lot like learning a new language. And each ingredient becomes the grammar and the vocabulary for your final dish, which can be seen as a sentence in this metaphor.
Italian Cooking - Let's Begin Team Building
The first thing to do before starting to cook with the ingredients you have is to limit them. Almost all Italian dishes use a finite amount of ingredients to make the dish, overloading with unnecessary spices will put out the subtle taste of the natural ingredients. Learning the value of each of the ingredients will help you know their weaknesses and strength, finding a better ingredient to fill the weakness of another is the step to become a great Italian restaurant in Musical Box Museum.
The second thing to do is to make sure every ingredient in the pantry is fresh and well-seasoned. This process really helps to bring the dish closer to the authentic Italian dish that we know and love.
When cooking pasta, make sure to leave it a little undercooked, so the pasta can still have the bite factor. Otherwise, everything on the plate would be soggy and wet. Frequent tasting the pasta before serving will help you get to know the dish better and understand the time management of the sogginess of the pasta.
Italian cuisine has an excellent reputation, and the country's food is known throughout the world. While Italy is perhaps best known for pasta and pizza, there are also many excellent Italian meat and seafood dishes. Additionally, Italy is also of course known for its desserts and cheeses.
For much of its history, Italy was divided into many separate regional states, and with parts of the country being occupied by foreign powers such as France and Italy. Indeed, it was not until 1861 that Italian unification was achieved. As a result of this history, Italian is well-known for its diverse regions, and this diversity is very much reflected in the country's cuisine.
Some dishes from the various regions of Italy include:
* Calabria (the "toe" of Italy) is known for its spicy salami
* Naples is the home of mozzarella and pizza. Additionally, sfogliatelle (Italian filled pastries) originate from the city too.
* Northern Italy produces many excellent foods. Lombardy and Piedmont both produce rice, and this is used in risotto. Other products from northern Italy include balsamic vinegar, bolognese sauce (ragu), lasagna, mortadella (a type of pork sausage served served cold) parmigiano (parmesan cheese), polenta, prosciutto (dry cured ham), and tortellini (stuffed pasta).
* Rome is known for producing a unique style of very thing pizzas. Classically Roman ingredients include pecorino (cheese made from sheep's milk) and offal.
* Sardinia has a reputation for fine lamb meat, and its own variety of pecorino.
* Sicily's proximity to North Africa and the Arab world is reflected in its cusine, most notably in the use of lemon and pestachio. Sicily is also known for its seafood (especially swordfish and tuna), and its desserts, which include gelato icre cream, and granita (a semi-frozen dessert made using water, sugar, and flavorings).
* Tuscany is known for its meat, the use of white beans in its cuisine, and the region's fine unsalted bread.
You can follow all the rules in the textbook to create a perfect Italian dish but you won’t reach the final stage of an Italian dish without putting your heart in it. It is never about pleasing the crowd with Italian dishes, it has always been sticking to the original grandma recipe, you can have all the ingredients but it won’t be complete without putting the heart and soul in cooking. Knowing who you are cooking for, what do they like the most, then creating the dish made especially for them will taste better.
Ingredients for Italian Pasta Recipes
Most people's idea of Italian cuisine is a combination of tortellini, minestrone, spaghetti, and lasagna. If you visit Italy with such an narrow view of Italian cuisine, you will be pleasantly surprised at the variety of food that the Italians eat.
The reason for this variety is simple. Italy has nineteen regions, each with its distinct cuisine. In addition, Italian cuisine changes according to the seasons. Fresh ingredients are of utmost importance in an Italian kitchen. As a result, you will discover that the summer cuisine is different from the winter cuisine.
North Italian Cuisine
Usually, Americans are familiar with the part of Italian cuisine that is typical of north Italy. All the heavy dishes loaded with cheese and rich sauce comes from this reason. You will enjoy a stay in north Italy if you enjoy the Italian food available in America.
Although you will be familiar with north Italian cuisine, you will still be surprised by the wonderful differences in authentic north Italian food and the Italian fare available in America.
South Italian Cuisine
The cuisine of south Italy is different. The people of south Italy use more fish in their diet. This variant of Italian cuisine is named "Mediterranean food."
In general, south Italian dishes are lighter and healthier. Due to their food habits, south Italians are the healthiest people in the world. One of the factors that makes south Italian diet so healthy is the use of olive oil in most of their dishes.
Spices in Italian Cuisine
Don't limit your ideas of Italian cuisine to a few dishes of spaghetti and meatball. Italian cuisine is rich, complex, and diverse. More spices find their way into an Italian dish than just garlic.
Many people are under the misconception that the Italians use an over abundance of spices in their food. This is because, in America, people who have neither been to Italy nor tasting Italian cuisine cook Italian food.
Italians use spices only to enhance the natural flavor of particular dishes. Moreover, the nature of Italian food depends on the seasons, and due to this, Italians do not depend heavily on the use of spices. Their meats, pastas, and sauces usually have a fresh flavor of their own. Travelers, however, has discovered that north Italians use more spices in their food than south Italians.
When considering Italian cuisine, it is of great importance to realize that there isn't any standard Italian cuisine. With nineteen region, there are nineteen variants of the Italian cuisine. Each region has its unique style of cooking, its dishes featuring local vegetables and animal products. In spite of the variations, a traveler in any part of Italy will find that something about Italian cuisine is familiar, and this comforting feeling of familiarity is what makes Italian cuisine a hot favorite in most of the world.
Rushing the stages of cooking is a bad way to cook Italian food. Cooking something good takes time, if not, the dish would come off under cooked and as the dish wouldn’t have much time to fully utilize all the ingredients in it. The end result would not match the standard quality. It is recommended to savor the moment because Italian dishes are more than just average fast food.
There is a rigorous process must be followed to create a perfect Italian dish. The addition of any new ingredients might spoil the genuineness of the dish. Italian cuisines leave much more than just a taste, they offer the traditional food aroma, the very quality of taste of the ingredients, and just by being healthy. Since there is no inclusion of any chemicals to appeal to a larger audience, the food can far away from reaching for the fast-food processed taste. Authenticity adds much more value to Italian food than just being another thing to eat while hungry.
Italian Cuisine is much more regional and varied than many people imagine. It is easy to think that some pasta, some marinara sauce, a crust of Italian bread and a glass of wine is the beginning and end of Italian cuisine, especially if you grew up in the United States.
There is much more than red sauce and starch on the agenda for most Italian regional cuisines, and with all of the various regions and cultures in the boot on the ocean. Form the snow capped north to the sun drenched islands of the Mediterranean; Italian cuisine is as varied as the landscape.
Tuscany is one of the gems of northern Italy and thousands of tourist's flock to this beautiful region every year. Tuscany is sought out for its simple but delicious dishes, seasoned sparingly with basil, parsley, and thyme. Tuscan bread and a little bit of olive oil are a big part of the seafood dishes of the Tuscan region.
Abruzzo, a little known treasure in the Middle Eastern section of the boot mixes chili peppers into almost all of their dishes. Like many other regions in Italy, there is a mixture of mountain and seafood dishes. Although pasta is usually a main dish in many countries, in this and many regions of Italy it is as likely to be served as an hors dourves.
Most of the chefs in the Abruzzo region are skilled at hand rolling their own stuffed pastas, and crepes are used in meat dishes, rolled in savory sauces or put in to broths. Polenta is as prevalent in this part of Italy as pasta and the local sausages are some of the best you will come across.
Sardinia is home to a diverse cuisine and their island roots are reflected in their love of all things seafood. This, in addition to a rich heritage of not only Italians, but also Arabs, French, Greeks, and Spaniards, has made the island home to a diverse culture of seafood and meat dishes spiced with fennel and saffron. The Sardinians have a number of specialist cheeses based on sheep's rather than cows milk and a penchant for good solid home cooking, such as stews, that give the local cuisine a wonderful richness.
Emilia-Romagna although not a name that springs to mind when you are discussing Italy, has perhaps the finest regional cuisine in the country. It is often called the market basket of Italy. Located in northern Italy, Emilia-Romagna is home to many of Italy's most renowned dishes, like Prosciutto di Parma, Mortadella, Parmigiano-Reggiano, and balsamic vinegar. Highly spiced food and a more stylish presentation are the hallmarks of this wonderful part of Italy.
The Italian cuisine that we are used to eating abroad is only the tip of the iceberg and it is well worth exploring in depth the styles and variations of Italian regional cuisine. The style of the food is very often influenced by its proximity to other areas such as Northern Africa and other Mediterranean and European countries. All of these places have deeply affected Italian regional cuisines.
Shepard's, shopkeepers, farmers, and fisherman all contribute to one of the most diverse cultural cuisines in the world. . When you next go out for Italian food try and see if you can find something a little more regional than the ubiquitous pasta and pizza, who knows it could be the start of a real passion for Italian regional cuisine.