In one shape or another, pasta has been an Italian staple since the days of ancient Rome. It has been the food of peasants, the pride of royalty and a culinary badge of honour for Italian emigrants all over the world. It’s hard to imagine Italy without pasta, yet the history of the country’s most famous food has changed with the fortunes of eaters and cooks alike.
In A Brief History of Pasta, discover the humble origins of fettuccine Alfredo that lie in a back-street trattoria in Rome, how Genovese sauce became a Neapolitan staple and what conveyor belts have to do with serving spaghetti. Meet the people who have shaped pasta’s history, from the traders who brought pesto to the world to the celebrity chef who sparked national outrage by adding an unpeeled garlic clove to his recipe for amatriciana sauce. Renowned culinary historian Luca Cesari delves into the fascinating variety of his country’s best-loved food, serving up the secrets behind the creamiest carbonara, the richest ragu alla Bolognese and the tastiest tortellini.