Last Updated on January 24, 2023
Italian cuisine is so popular that you can find more than one Italian restaurant in each big city across the world. Pizza, pasta and risotto are three of the most popular Italian foods you can enjoy in almost any city in the world. What is so special about Italian cuisine? Why is it so popular? The popularity of Italian foods is extraordinary.
They use a wide range of flavored spices and seasonal ingredients for making Italian food. And, most importantly, they are still following the traditional way. This is the reason why Italian cuisine has conquered the entire world. Immigrants have also contributed to the delicious and mouth-watering Italian cuisine.
The credit of making pizza popular goes to Americans. Pasta is perhaps the second most popular Italian dish after Pizza. Italian sausage pasta and there is a wide range of other types of pasta satisfying the appetite of people all across the world.
There are literally thousands of types of Italian pasta coming in a variety of shapes. While quills and tubes are the most popular shapes, you might also come across pasta of some unusual shapes. These are homemade shapes varying from region to region. If you are interested in trying different types of pasta, we bring you a guide to Italian pasta shapes.
There are 20 different regions in Italy and each has its own distinctive cuisine. Each cuisine is influenced by the history, terrain and climate of the region. The mountainous region of Piedmont in the North is the best known for truffles and creamy Gorgonzola. The fertile central region of Umbria brings you flavourful tomatoes and cured meat.
Sicily can satisfy your taste buds with seafood and artichokes. These regions have varieties of ingredients used in sauces to be paired with pasta. Pasta is shaped in a way to hold the sauce. This is the reason why pasta of different shapes is popular in different regions. While some regions are known for Italian sausage pasta, some are known for Italian tomato pasta. The origin of pasta is still disputed.
Let see types of Italian pasta popular in different regions:
Puglia, Southern Italy
This region is the home of Orecchiette. This type of pasta is also known as ‘little ears’ because of its shape. Orecchiette is served with anchovies, broccoli rabe, garlic and chili.
Veneto, North Italy
This region brings you Bigoli that is served with cream-based sauces, oil-based sauces and seafood sauces. Ingredients used for making this thick, noodle-like spaghetti include whole wheat flour, duck eggs and butter.
Campania, Southern Italy
Campania is the best known for Penne. Cut on an angle, this type of pasta is shaped to hold meats sauces or rich tomato sauce.
Emilia Romagna, North Italy
Strozzapreti popular in Emilia Romagna is also known as ‘priest-strangler’ or ‘priest-choker’. There was a time when Italians were pretty angry at priests and monks having powers. So, this type of pasta was designed to kill those monks and priests. This type of pasta is the best served with light, smooth sauces. Try Strozzapreti with pesto. You will love it.
Liguria, North Italy
Trofie is small, rolled pasta served with green beans, pesto and potatoes.
Abruzzo, central Italy
Spaghetti alla chitarra is made using a wooden frame called chitarra. This is a wooden frame with wires strung across it. A sheet of pasta dough is pushed through the wires of this frame to cut it into strands. This type of pasta is served with oil-based sauces or silky cream-based sauces.
Tuscany, central Italy
This region is known for its fluted pasta called Gigli.