I read this article last night, and it bugged me. Aside from the lame title, I couldn’t figure out why, until this morning.
The author didn’t do the research, she shows no respect, regard or awareness of Italian cooking, regional or otherwise. What she claims to be an Italian sauce is simply a sauce that left its roots far behind and has become an American wish for nostalgia. Her family’s “Italian” sauce is no more Italian than egg foo young.
What is interesting about the story is how living in a family with shallow and wandering roots, this sauce becomes the anchor that holds the family together. The dining room table that hosted all these spaghetti dinners is now a cherished object. I have the same feelings about my dinner tables; how many dinners, how much laughter, conversation, debate and memories have occurred at the table.
So, this story turns up as the most e-mailed story of the day, it takes up half a page in our edition of the Times, and all it does it perpetuate Italian stereotypes. Celebrate the tradition that your family has established, and leave it at that.
P.S. Dried basil?? Come on….