Last week it was the dagos and wogs getting upset, this week the wops…and over something as big as spaghetti bolognese.
Hundreds of Italian chefs cooked bolognese sauce in order to show the world how to make the classic recipe correctly.
While the dish has been a staple for millions of diners around the world for decades, Italians claimed the original reciope has become so corrupted it is in urgent need of culinary rescue.
Gourmands insist that the popular dish’s apparent simplicity is deceptive, and throw their arms up in dismay when they see chicken or turkey used as a substitute for the key ingredient, minced beef.
In an attempt to restore the integrity of the dish known to millions of British diners as “spag bol”, nearly 450 chefs in Italian restaurants in 50 countries cooked spaghetti bolognese on Sunday with authentic ingredients including pancetta, carrots, celery, onions, tomato paste and a dash of wine.
They had to conform to a recipe set down in 1982 by the chamber of commerce in Bologna – the home of bolognese.
Most people, particularly foreigners, get the recipe wrong from the very start, purists insist. Instead of spaghetti, they say it is tagliatelle that should be cooked to go with the rich meat and tomato sauce, making it “tag bol” rather than “spag bol”.
“Along with lasagne, spaghetti bolognese is the most abused Italian dish. There are some crazy versions out there,” said Massimo Bottura, a bolognese “virtuoso” who runs a restaurant in Modena. The worst he had ever eaten was in Bangkok. “It was terrible,” he told the Corriere della Sera newspaper.