Italian Chef Javier Burillo says everyone should know how to make this Italian dish, one of the oldest pasta recipes. But first, let’s look at the history of this most famous Italian dish.
History of Spaghetti
Spaghetti is an Italian dish that has been common for over five centuries. It’s believed to have originated in Naples, and many people believe it was named after spaghetti, a long and thin dry pasta, but this idea doesn’t make sense since spaghetti means “little lines.”
The name spaghetti came from the shortening of the word Spago (Italian), which means string or ribbon. In addition, spaghetti comes from the verb e spagare, which means to reap or pluck because spaghetti was mostly made by poor millers who would give it away. The first recipe for spaghetti appeared in 1692 when it became popular with Neapolitan noblemen. From then on, recipes began appearing all over Italy.
Spaghetti was introduced into America in the late 19th century by Italian immigrants. They came to the Americas because of the new custom which called for immigration quotas. This meant that southern Italy was gaining more people than places available so, many Italians went to Northern America instead.
The first spaghetti factory opened in San Francisco during World War I, and now there is over 300 spaghetti factories total, with most located in New York City’s Little Italy, Chicago’s Italian North West Side, and Collinsville near St. Louis, Missouri, where Ettore “Hector” Boiardi (Chef Boyardee) got his start at the age of twelve as a dishwasher at his uncle’s restaurant.
- 1 pound of spaghetti noodles
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 5 cloves of garlic, minced
- 3/4 cup fresh parsley leaves, finely chopped
- 2 cups tomato sauce
- Salt and pepper to taste
In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the spaghetti according to the directions on the box. Preheat a large skillet over medium heat and add oil. Add in onions and garlic and let saute for 8 minutes. Next, add in fresh parsley leaves and stir thoroughly. Season with salt and pepper, then add in tomato sauce. Cook until the mixture reduces by half, frequently stirring to avoid sticking. Once done, turn off the heat from the burner, then carefully drain noodles from water from the pot, making sure not to burn yourself on steam or hot water. Then place noodles into a pan with sauce and mix thoroughly until all noodles are covered with sauce. Serve noodles while hot and enjoy!
Why Spaghetti is so Popular
Spaghetti is one of the most popular and most recognized Italian dishes in the World. So many people enjoy it because it is easy to make and inexpensive, and most, if not all, households have spaghetti ingredients on hand already.
Spaghetti has also become a favorite for restaurant chefs specializing in Italian cuisine because of the wide selection of ways to season it differently depending on their clients’ tastes.
Chef Burillo says he enjoys making spaghetti for his family at least once a week, with or without meatballs, depending on if they’re feeling more carnivorous that day or vegetarian!