When most people think of Italian food, they think of pasta! This is especially true in Italian-American cooking, where spaghetti, fettuccini, and lasagna are seen as cultural cornerstones. Of course, pasta isn’t the only thing that upscale Italian restaurants in New Jersey serve; we offer a wide variety of meat and vegetarian entrees, delicious seafood, and some of the best wines and desserts in the area. However, if you are looking for pasta, look no further! This article will review the interesting history of pasta throughout time, as well as featuring some of our staff favorite pasta dishes at Casa Bellisima.

Pasta Through the Ages

Contrary to popular belief, the humble noodle or pasta did not start in Italy—evidence suggests that most countries have created some sort of “pasta” or “paste” of grains that could be easily boiled or fried to create an energy-packed, quick meal. Some research suggests that the concept itself started in ancient Asia, but it is difficult to trace. Remember Marco Polo—the explorer, not the pool game—and his quests? Evidence from his early travels describe a pasta dish that is similar to modern lasagna, suggesting that pasta had been popular even in the 13th century! Pasta was not very popular in the early Americas, as other resources were more abundant, but president Thomas Jefferson pushed pasta to it’s popularity with his pasta eating habits—a habit he supplied thanks to a friend in Naples! Finally, in the 19thcentury when many Italians immigrated to America, they came with pasta and plenty of recipes to use it! Today’s pastas are mostly wheat-based still, but there is an increased interest in gluten-free, high-protein, and low-carb pasta that keeps driving innovation.

Our Favorite Pastas

We offer so many delicious pastas it’s hard to choose our favorite, but one that keeps coming up again and again is our lobster ravioli. Made from our fresh lobster filling and lightly covered in a pink vodka sauce, this one brings people back again and again. Looking for something out of the ordinary? Try our linguini with white clam sauce, made up of garlic, white wine, olive oil, basil, and chopped clams. Looking for a classic? Our fettuccini alfredo is always popular, and our homemade white cream sauce is loaded with parmesan cheese. Of course, we offer gluten-free pasta for those with sensitivities, and are happy to swap your favorite pasta in wherever we can.

Want great pasta or other Italian food in New Jersey? Stop by Casa Bellisima today!