From ‘lasagne’ to ‘pesto,’ and ‘gelato,’ many of the most delicious gastronomic delicacies have been invented in the Belpaese

Italians use plenty of English words on a daily basis and English speakers do the same with Italian ones. Many of these relate to one of the great traditions of the Belpaese, its cuisine. From the morning ‘cappuccino’ to the after-dinner ‘tiramisu’, the delicacies created in this wonderful country delight the taste buds from all over the world.

Everyone knows what ‘pasta’ is and many chefs even know how to cook ‘al dente.’ Indeed, ‘spaghetti,’ ‘tortellini,’ and ‘fettuccine’ are some of the most popular Italian dishes in the United States. ‘Pasta’ is very much appreciated with the untranslated ‘pesto,’ the Ligurian sauce made with basil and garlic. Among first courses, there are also ‘lasagne’ or ‘lasagna’ (respectively plural and singular in their original language). This famous dish was already influencing British cuisine in the XIV century. We have a testimony of this fact in “The Forme of Cury” cookbook written at the court of King Richard II.

‘Pasta’ is very much appreciated with the untranslated ‘pesto,’ the Ligurian sauce made with basil and garlic

With museums dedicated to it and appearances in countless movies, ‘pizza’ is undoubtedly part of the American gastronomic culture. However, its original name is a constant reminder of the Italian origins of this versatile food that is prepared in many different styles, even as street food. Another example of delicious street food whose name betrays its origins is ‘gelato.’ It is important to note that this is not a fancier name for ‘ice cream,’ they are different versions of the cold dessert. Ice cream indicates a preparation with more cream than milk and, very often, egg yolk. In the ‘Gelato’ recipe, instead, there are generally no eggs (except for some specific flavors) and mostly milk rather than cream.

All the aforementioned foods have the same names in Italy and other countries. Thus, if you order any of them in Boston, Glasgow, Rome, or Florence, you can expect pretty much the same thing. This doesn’t happen when you order a ‘latte.’ If you order it anywhere else in the world, you get a coffee drink made with espresso and steamed milk. While, if you order a ‘latte’ in Italy, you are presented either with a glass of cold milk or a cup of hot milk because latte means simply milk. If you want milk with espresso in it you need to order a ‘latte macchiato’ (stained milk).

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