From long strands to short spirals and rigatoni, pasta is a beloved staple in Italian cuisine used in every region of the nation. Pasta was not always a hit in Italian cuisine, however, because it was rather difficult to produce when it was introduced to Sicily during the 8th century. Here is the story of how the nation of Italy began to slowly embrace this food and use it in dishes now considered integral to the cuisine.
Introducing pasta to Italy
Despite popular legend, it is unlikely that Marco Polo introduced pasta to Italy after traveling to China during the 13th century. The food did likely originate in China, but it was introduced to Italy by way of the Arab invasion of Sicily five centuries prior to Marco Polo’s birth.
Streamlining pasta production
In its early history in Italy, pasta was not widely popular, because its production was highly labor-intensive and costly. Pasta did have a long shelf life, though, so it did find a place feeding sailors on their long journeys. Once the nation saw the invention of the pasta maker in Naples, the cost of pasta making dropped significantly, and the food began to cement itself into everyday dining throughout Italy.
Sign up for the WeekAway Newsletter.