Oct 30, 2014

Italian-American cuisine

About 4 million Italians immigrated to the United States of America between 1880 and 1920. Most came from the poor south, where a bad economy and corrupt politics had generated centuries of impoverishment. The hopeful immigrants carried with them rich cultural baggage and regional Italian culinary tradition that helped forge new dishes which both immigrants and Americans, in time, came to consider as staples. This was the genesis of Italian-American cuisine.

Many immigrants came from Sicily, Calabria, Campania, Abruzzi, Molise, Basilicata, and smaller numbers from northern towns. Large communities settled in New York, Philadelphia, Chicago, St. Louis, Boston and San Francisco, cities that would give birth to a cuisine which fused old school Italian priorities, with ingredients native to the "new" lands.

Here is a look at some of the most representative Italo-American dishes, and the original Italian recipes that inspired them.

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  1. Lovely post. Food, Italy and history - what's not to like!

    Louisa, My Family and Abruzzo