7 Popular Italian Dishes

Italian cuisine is one of the most popular in the world. In recent times, it has received tremendous appreciation in India as well. The sheer variety in provincial recipes in Italian cooking is truly mind-boggling and deserves special mention. Although one mainly thinks of pizza and pasta when we think of Italian food, there is more to this wonder cuisine than just these signature dishes.

Among all the European cuisines, French and Italian cuisines are the most famous. This is because of the wholesome ingredients that are used in this type of cooking combined with the refined and sophisticated style of cooking that is unmatched all over the world. These characteristics have given French and Italian pride of place in the culinary books of famous chefs and hoteliers.

I am Sanjay Jhunjhunwala, a complete foodie at heart. I am a passionate food blogger based in Kolkata. This article helps you become aware of 7 popular Italian dishes. Here we provide you with a detailed description of these dishes along with the ingredients used in them. We also give you interesting tidbits of information like when you should eat them and the like. This helps you make a choice among all these marvelous dishes that can make you hungry in no time.

Read on to find out which these dishes are and where they have come from.

1.     Saltimbocca

Saltimbocca is a famous traditional Italian dish that is made of veal. Helpful carvings of veal are covered fully with prosciutto and then marinated in red wine or olive oil. The best part about this dish is the way of preparing it changes from region to region in Italy. This gives you a distinct flavor each time you choose a different place to eat it from. This is what makes Saltimbocca the ideal candidate for traditional Italian food.

Saltimbocca is an Italian word that translates to ‘jump in the mouth’. This dish certainly deserves this name as you definitely get this sensation when you put your first mouthful of this dish. This dish is so famous that it sold in all eateries and restaurants all over Rome and the rest of Italy. You must definitely try out this dish if you want to savor the best that Italy has to offer.

2.     Ribollita

Ribollita is a famous hearty Tuscan dish that will make you want more. Even though there are many regional variations of this dish, we are sure that you will like each and every one of them. The main ingredients that go into the making of this dish are kale, cabbage, cannelloni beans and stale bread that is leftover from the previous night.

In Italian, ribollita means re-boiled. It has got its name from the fact that it was the favorite dish of servants who used it to make their own dinners. It was mainly made from minestrone and vegetable that had extra servings. This was then reheated after adding some ingredients and then was ready to serve.

3.     Margherita da Napoli

Margherita da Napoli is a classic Italian dish from Naples. It is common knowledge that the best Italian pizzas are those from Naples. That certainly makes Margherita da Napoli one of the best Italian dishes that you should try.

It mainly consists of thin crust baked in the perfect way in the comfort of your home. It also makes the optimal use of tomato sauces that are home secrets passed down from mothers to daughters. This is one of the few pizzas that do not have a lot of toppings as a simple Neapolitan Margherita can be extremely tasty, delicious and delightful. The divine taste will definitely leave an unforgettable memory in your minds and hearts.

The Margherita da Napoli has got its name from Queen Margherita who tasted it for the first time in her life in 1889 in the houses of poor families. In fact, she loved it so much that she made it an inseparable part of the Italian aristocracy. It is the most searched for pizzas in all the pizzerias of Italy. Hence, you must definitely not miss this delectable Italian treat!

4.     Mushroom Risotto

Risotto is one of the most popular rice dishes in Italian cuisine. There are many types of risottos that contain different kinds of ingredients. However, rice is a common factor that is followed in all risotto dishes. This is because risotto means rice in Italian.

As the name suggests, mushroom risotto contains mushrooms with rice loaded with spoonfuls of butter. Mushrooms are healthy vegetables that are packed with vitamins and minerals and are extremely beneficial for the body. This is because a bowl of mushroom risotto provides you with a high level of nourishment for the body.

Mushrooms are rich in proteins and antioxidants. They are also extremely useful for fighting against cancer. All these factors make mushroom risottos one of the most sought after dishes in Italian cuisine and this is one of the main reasons why you should try it out. For more details, you can try to check out sanjayjhunjhunwala.in for more gastronomic delights.

5.     Tiramisu

Tiramisu is an Italian word that means ‘pick-me-up’. When you see it, you realize that the name is very apt as its very sight makes you want to devour it quickly. It mainly consists of sponge fingers filled with coffee. This is surrounded all over by a creamy mascarpone blend and the high dose of caffeine makes you alert and invigorated.

6.     Lasagna

Lasagna is another signature Italian dish. The main component of lasagna is the home-made Bolognese sauce and this is a must-have in your dish too. The lasagna must be decked with parmesan cheese and arranged layer by layer with vegetables, bacon, and lamb. This makes it truly appetizing and delicious.

7.     Pistachio Panna Cotta

Pistachio Panna Cotta is an Italian dessert that helps you finish your delicious meal in the perfect Italian way. It contains a lot of gelatin, cream, and milk. In Italian, panna cota means ‘cooked cream’. It is served chilled with a garnishing of chopped pistachios. The ease of preparation makes this dessert the ideal one to make at home. You must definitely not miss out on this Italian delicacy and relish it will full gusto!

From the above dishes, it is clear that there are many Italian recipes that can make your mouth water. This is how food blogging can help you satiate your hunger. All you need to do is just choose the best one among them that best suits your palate and try it out!

How To Appreciate Foreign Cuisines

A country’s native cuisine is an asset that showcases its culture. If the cuisine has worldwide popularity, then rest assured that there will be a rise in the number of foreign tourists willing to try it out. Appreciating foreign cuisines is an art that is possible only for the bold and adventurous.

 

However, most people, especially Indians are loath to try out different cuisines of foreign countries. This could be because of the heavy dose of spices and condiments in our food that makes everything taste bland.

 

Even so, we need to state that anybody can develop the ability to appreciate foreign cuisines. All you need to have is an open mind. If you are willing to explore and venture out into the unknown, then the world is your canvas.

 

I am Sanjay Jhunjhunwala, an avid food blogger. I love to educate and entertain people with my passion for food. I am the CEO of sanjayjhunjhunwala.in based in Kolkata and will keep you informed of the latest developments in haute cuisine through my informative food blogs.

 

This article helps you to understand the nuances of different kinds of cuisines all over the world and prepares you with tips on how to explore and enjoy them. Read on to find out more about how one can derive the maximum pleasure out of foreign cuisines so as to appreciate them to its entirety.

Have an Open Mind

While tasting foreign cuisines, the most important thing that you need to have is an open mind. This means that you should accept the fact that the cuisine of a foreign land will be different from your own.

 

You should also not compare and contrast the foreign dishes with the native ones. This is because there are very high chances that you will love your own kind of food so it doesn’t make sense to keep the comparison charts open at all times.

 

Try to savor the novel and exotic tastes of the new cuisine. Relish the smell and taste of something out of the ordinary. There will certainly be something that will appeal to your palate. Try to let the aroma and the garnish soothe and scintillate your taste buds.

 

In this way, it is very important to have an open mind when you taste foreign cuisines.

 

Explore and Relish

While it may not be possible for you to enjoy all the dishes that you taste, there will certainly be something that you like. You will be able to find this out only when you start exploring for dishes that are available in the said cuisine.

 

For example, most Westerners eat bland food. This makes it difficult for them to enjoy heavily spiced Indian food. However, this problem is solved once they discover the Thali. This quintessentially Indian dish provides them with the opportunity to savor a little bit of spice while at the same time enabling them to have wholesome food.

 

In the same vein, when you are exploring Chinese food, you can always go for the effervescent chicken noodles that will help you stay satiated while relishing the food with equal cherish. Hence, it makes sense to pick and choose from the vast variety of dishes available that will help you get maximum pleasure out of this activity.

 

This shows you the need to have awareness of the different dishes available that will give you ideas on what suits best for you.

Understand the Cultural Nuances

For appreciating foreign cuisines, you need to understand the cultural nuances of the food being served as well. For example, it is a tradition in China to have steamed dumplings for breakfast on the day of the Chinese New Year.

 

In Tamil Nadu, it is a culinary tradition to have Payasam on Pongal. This is because it coincides with the harvest season and is a merry occasion where sweets are offered to guests who come in. In the same way, the Iranian practice of brewing tea in a samovar is world renowned. This makes it authentic but portrays it as global.

 

Cultural intricacies can be very interesting when one conducts research on them. This would also explain why Chinese cuisine is the most popular in the world and its popularity extends from New York and New Delhi to Beijing.

 

This clearly explains why it is important to understand the cultural nuances of a country when a particular foreign dish is served.

Taste the Delicacies

When exploring foreign cuisines, it becomes really worthwhile to taste all the delicacies. Well, there are many reasons for this. The most important fact among these is that there is certainly a valid reason that the dish has become a delicacy.

 

It showcases its popularity among the masses. It portrays its efficacy in winning over the hearts of foodies worldwide. Hence, it definitely must have something extraordinary that catches everybody’s attention. Hence, it becomes important for you to taste them the moment you get the opportunity.

 

Delicacies occupy a place of immense pride in the annals of haute cuisine. It effectively becomes a cultural statement that must be savored for generations to come. In this way, trying out delicacies is the best way in which you can become a connoisseur of gourmet cuisine.

 

This is how tasting the delicacies of a particular country can become the gateway to exploring more dishes of the same genre and style.

Savor Street Food

One thing that constantly gets overlooked in the quest for foreign cuisine is street food. This is also an important characteristic of every city in the world. Hence, not savoring the street food of a city means that you are missing out on all the areas of fun.

 

The rapid pace of globalization has led to the rise in foreign street food served worldwide. This explains why momos, egg rolls, tacos, and nachos have become ubiquitous around the globe. This has added a totally new dimension to the definition of global cuisine.

 

Hence, it becomes extremely important for us to savor foreign varieties of street food wherever they are available.

 

So just follow the above-mentioned tips to appreciate foreign cuisines and indulge in gastronomic delights from around the world!

 

Why I Became a Food Blogger

People often ask me what I do for a living, and my answer is I am a food blogger. Honestly, I am not surprised by the reactions since some find it cool, most of them have an expression that screams does it pay well. To be honest this has been my true calling and I have never been happier in doing anything other than this. Although it took me some time to realize, but this was my true finding and this makes me happy.

 

While most food bloggers may know, what food blogging is about, the larger world might not know what a food blog is or what food blogging is about? It can be confusing at times because on one hand you can visit the different restaurants and explore new food or just stop, stare and admire a rustic piece of wood that can be used as a background of your food photo session. It is not rocket science and if you have the knack, you too can become a blogger in no time. Some of the tips that have been gathered from the experts around the globe are:

 

  • Finding your blogging personality helps you win half the battle. Whether it is your anecdotes, your storytelling or taking your readers on a culinary journey with your words, you need to identify your niche and stay true to it. It is important that you respect, stay positive and be constructive in your food discovery journey.

 

  • You need to stay ahead of the pack. How? You need to dedicate quite some time and do some research which will help you understand your audience and food trends in your area upon which you can start building your platform.

 

  • Whether it is covering a topic in a way that has not been done before or finding a new angle on something, recreation in unique ways is a big thumb up. At the same time, constantly adapting to social media and SEO changes is critical to being on top of your game too.

 

  • You need to be passionate about what you love. In terms of food, it does not only mean that you have to visit the new places, maybe a simple dish tried out with a twist can inspire others and at the same time develop the flair. Your blog should also reflect the same and not be just another update that everyone views, comments and likes. You want to be the dependable food blogger. It took me quite a while, but now when I hear people saying that Sanjay Jhunjhunwala is an excellent food blogger, believe me, it feels even better than having my favorite sushi!

 

  • The first impression is always the lasting impression and it holds true for food. Photos of chocolate covered waffles or ice cream with ten different toppings, juicy BBQ chicken wings, and cheesy pizzas – things that make people want to throw their diets in the bin and give in to the dark side. After all, what is life without giving in to your temptations?

 

  • Stay authentic and true to yourself. Many self-proclaimed food bloggers claim to know the secret of the world, so you need to be true to your audience as well. You need to back up what you do and walk the talk.

 

  • Engaging with your audience and having a food niche lets you bond with your audience and helps you get to know them better.

 

Start creating your food blogging journey today, and who knows you might just become the most sought-after food critic in the world.

Eating food the Dhaba style!

When you are planning a short road trip to a nearby place, what are the things on your list? Garments, medicine, light luggage and some snacks. For any road trip, missing out on the dhaba food is almost a sin. Considering that there are numerous such places on the highway, here’s why you should dig into the goodness.

 

Firstly, it is an awesome experience. There’s something about these outdoor eateries which give you a sense of freedom and lets you enjoy the food.

 

Secondly, the food is generally light and cheap. Order a plate of tandoori roti with tadka or mixed lentil dish which is cooked with onion, tomato and regular seasoning. Add to that a plate of scrambled eggs and you’ll be feeling energized.

 

Thirdly, the service is generally fast. Since these stalls are mostly placed alongside highways, the service is fast. People pause to take a break or get a quick munch before covering the journey.

 

Fourthly, the ambiance. It’s the journey and the overall sit and eat and enjoying the openness which can really uplift any mood.

 

And finally, you don’t have to go to a dhaba at all. With so many eateries opening up, you are bound to come across one which serves dhaba style food. Considering that you might not have time for the trip, you can always find time to order to make reservations.

 

Food bloggers will also share their opinions about the quality and recommend the must-try dishes. Alternatively, if you are planning a house party, you can always cook at home. You’ll be surprised to find a wide range of roadside cuisine which can be achieved at home.

 

But don’t bear the idea that you will find only typical cuisine here. Depending on the region and the food platter, you will find more than flat breads and lentil soup. Some also serve full-fledged meals to serve all kinds of requirements. It may sound voucher but every state has embraced the dhaba culture and induced their own style giving the dishes distinct flavor and style.

 

Earlier days, the concept of dhaba was restricted to catering to truckies and long-distance travelers. Till date, dhabas comprise of a shed like building where the food is prepared and surrounded by Charpoys or day-bed type seating on which you can relax and eat your food. Regular table chair setting is also available.

 

Some of the well known items that you should try include kadhai paneer, mixed veg, tandoori chicken, butter chicken, tadka dal (which can be prepared in both vegetarian and non-vegetarian style), kaali dal, chicken curry, egg curry (which is also opted by many), parantha (plain and/or with filling), naan and etc. You can finish the meal with a glass of lassi or chaach and you are good to go.

 

Again if you are the sort who does not want to leave the comfort of home yet want to experience the food, you can either order in or prepare the dishes yourself. You will find numerous recipes through videos and print which you can make the most use of. At the same time, you can also impress everyone with your culinary style and bring the dhaba to your home.

 

You can find inspiration on different food blogs where you will get recommendations and hands-on experience to enjoy the whole dhaba culture. Start looking and contributing today. Even if you are arranging for a house party and are out of ideas, this might help you plan the event and you can get the most of it with family and friends right at home.

Rediscovering The Street Food of India

The phrase ‘Unity in Diversity’ holds true on many occasion when one talks about India, one of which is the availability of food. Food connects us all, don’t you agree? In a country with 1.2 billion population, you get 1.2 billion taste buds and that is a huge figure in the culinary world. North, South, East or West, you will always find gastronomic delights in every corner that you can indulge in.

 

As much as I love to try new food, I believe that for a foodie, the best way to get the real flavor would be to try out street food. So if you are thinking that it is just aloo chaat and tikkis, be informed that India has topped the charts for its diverse options in street food. Indian street food is one of a kind with a mélange of exotic spices and ingredients and if you are someone who loves to swear by street food, get ready to tantalize your taste buds. There is no reason why you should not hang out at the roadside momo stall, or enjoy the crunchy puchkas, as you like it.

 

Here are some of the delicious treats from all over India:

 

Chhole Bhature – this lip-smacking dish is a staple in a Punjabi household and can salivate your taste buds at any point of time. This is readily available in any part of India and is considered the desi version of the English bread and butter combination. A great choice for vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike.

 

Tunde Kebab – treat yourself with Awadh culture with this amazing kebab. Succulent and exceptionally soft till the core is what makes it an absolute favorite among food lovers. The history behind the amazing creation goes back to Haji Murad Ali who had only one hand and had created it to satisfy the dying wish of a toothless royal. Enriched history indeed.

 

Litti Chokha – hailing from Bihar, it is a unique dish which can be had for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. A spicy curry made from potato or brinjal and served with litti or small bread made of grams, this is heavenly food when served with a spoonful of ghee. This vegetarian delight has gloriously made its way to almost every corner in the country.

 

Phucka/ Golgappa – it is very difficult to find a Bengal dweller who has not professed his love for puchkas. Ask any Mumbaikar and you will hear how they swear by their tangy and spicy golgappa. Known by different names, offers the same pleasure, these scrumptious little bombs with spicy filling and tangy tamarind water leaves you craving for more. No one can eat just one holds true for these little delights.

 

Momo – there is absolutely no doubt or second opinion as to why the little dumplings are one of the most sought-after street food in India. Native to Tibet and Nepal, this roadside culinary has escalated from small stalls to food centers and food malls around the country and the globe. Vegetarian or non-vegetarian, the alluring fragrance is unmissable when you pass and irresistible when served with a bowl of soup or chicken stock and spicy hot chili dip. Even Thukpa is a perfect lip-smacking Tibetan delight that is a complete meal that is very satisfying when you have a cold, or even during a winter day.

 

Chowmein – this too is a dish that has been given a traditional twist in different parts of the country and is loved by all. Constantly evolving with more and more flavors, add a side dish with this and you have a complete meal. Chow is prepared in various styles both for vegetarian and non-vegetarian platters and is the perfect food for the soul.

 

Kachori – when it comes to Rajasthan, there is more to the rich culture and tradition. Their exotic and rich variety of food with hot gravy and spicy chutney will keep you longing for their variety of Kachoris, especially in Bikaner. Kachoris are popular not only amongst the locals but tourists too swear by them.

 

Vada Pao – there are certain things that are synonymous with the commercial capital of India – Bollywood, Marine Drive, and Vada Pao. Considered to be the desi version of a burger, you will find students to businessmen flocking to these stalls every day to enjoy and savor this authentic roadside Marathi cuisine.

 

Kathi rolls – a visit to Kolkata is incomplete without a visit to Park Street and even more without having a piping hot Kathi roll. With succulent pieces of tender meat wrapped in a perfect fried parantha and accompanied with onion and chilies, these should be added to the wonders of the world list.

 

As you might guess there is a whole list of food and food blog that you can check out the best street food in your area and around the country. Make your own list and start exploring the best of what the Indian streets have to offer. For the love of food, comment your thoughts below!

 

Sanjay Jhunjhunwala, Food Blogger

Let’s Talk Food & Forget The World

If you want to talk politics, you would want to attend seminars or talks by people who are experts in the field. If you want to know the laws of Physics, you can most likely search the internet or look up for publications made. However, if you talk food, you don’t need anyone who specializes in the field, because hey, everyone eats and they have some special dish or cuisine that they love to gorge on.

 

The best part about food is it does not make you think too much unless of course you are a health enthusiast and like to watch your weight. That of course, is a good practice, but I am not one of the fitness-freaks honestly. Then again, if you are really into food and want to explore more, you will find many like-minded people around you. Look up for any food blog and you will find that it is not only that they love to eat but they themselves like to have a hands-on experience about the whole culinary item and cook it, creating their own versions.

 

What’s more is you can discuss food with anyone and there is no age bar. Ask a child about their favorite food and you are most likely to hear ice-cream, the flavor and the best topping that goes with it. Ask an elder person and they might probably come up with something that they had had years ago but the taste just seems to linger on. What’s more is that you will rarely find them telling you about the hot stew and soup that they might have at their old age and the occasionally mixed puff rice that they might share with their grandchildren.

 

Food is more than just something that satisfies your appetite. Balanced food diet is necessary and it does not mean that you include food items which are exclusive. You need your dose of nutrition so that you can sustain for long and have the energy to make it through the day. One of the most important parts of our living, some people who claim to be foodie or gourmet are those who have taken up the onus to eat and try different kinds of food and also share their views. Some do it as a hobby.

 

Sites like Zomato have not only encouraged people like myself to take their food seriously but also brought millions together. Again a lot also depends on the mood of the person. When in a good mood, everything tastes good, when in a bad mood, not even a plate of chicken kebab can make you happy.

 

As Julia Child said, people who love to eat are the best kind, it is believed that irrespective of the current situation, there is nothing that food can’t fix.

 

People should be thankful for every meal they get for survival as there are still many around the globe who go on days without food and water. Consider every meal a blessing and try your best to eradicate hunger, because, for a foodie, an empty mind is a devil’s workshop and cause of health problems. You don’t want that, do you?

 

There is no sincere love than the love for food. Bloggers like myself not only share their opinion on the different cuisines but also love to hear from their followers on the food that is trending. Read more and share more of your thoughts and ideas so that people also get to enjoy and try new stuff.

 

Sanjay Jhunjhunwala, Food Blogger

Being a Foodie By Heart

If you look up online, you will find that the modern definition of a foodie is someone who is “keenly interested in food, especially in eating and cooking.” Popularized in the United States, it wasn’t long till it spread throughout Great Britain in the 1985 publication of ‘The Official Foodie Handbook’ and subsequently worldwide. Although it is not an elite term per se, so one can say that a foodie would be someone who loves to eat due to his or her interest or hobby.

 

On a more personal level, I do not think “foodie” is the right term for me. I would more appropriately coin myself as someone who appreciates good things in life, one of which happens to be food. Okay, I might be a little obsessed with food than a normal person and one might find that my Facebook feeds consists of giving recommendations to the new eateries or sharing innovative cooking recipes. As much as I enjoy the paean of appreciation from my friends and followers, as an avid food blogger, I am willing to share and spread the joy of good food.

 

Let me share some of the things that go through the minds of a foodie/food lover every day

  • When it comes to trying something new, you and your tummy both are in for it. Spicy chili squid, check; slow-cooked pork ribs, check; poached salmon with mustard dressing, check. You get the idea, right?
  • It is believed that no matter what, food is something that never leaves you and loves you more than you love it. No matter what phase you are in your life, or your feeling, food will never hurt you.
  • Want to make up for a bad day in office? Eat. Want to go out and chill with your friends? Eat. Want to make up for a fight you had with your BFF? Eat.
  • If you love food and you know it, eating becomes your favorite part of the day. One might look forward to eating and once done, you are probably planning what to eat next. Happens with me post lunch mostly.
  • You are the go-to person when someone in your group is unable to finish their food. Be it the last slice of pizza, or the last two spoons of your chilly garlic fried rice, you are the captain who does not believe in abandoning the ship at any time.

 

When you embrace yourself as a food lover or foodie, you are well versed with the local ingredients that are used by the restaurant. In fact, you do not have to wait for the waiter to explain how an item is cooked sous-vide. You are well versed with different cooking styles and techniques. If you are not trying new joints, you are probably exploring the latest episodes of MasterChef, looking up for recommendations from a reliable food blog or checking out some Youtube culinary artist and getting ideas on the new things to try.

 

This is a fun hobby to have and quite satisfying to maintain. I mean what is there to complain when you have good food on your plate that satisfies your appetite and palette. If you want others to take advice from you, my advice would be to always back your opinion with relevant information and honest views. This way you will not only encourage others but also create a loyal base who can rely on your and take food advise from you.

 

Start penning your thoughts and show the world by spreading good word about food. Don’t judge food and you will never be disappointed. Like, ever.

 

Sanjay Jhunjhunwala, Food Blogger