The British Broadcast Corporation, BBC for short, publishes recipes from around the world on its website in the Food category. In most cases, it is well received by users, as the reviews on the website and on social networks show. But now a recently published recipe is causing a real shitstorm on the internet. TRAVELBOOK reveals what it’s all about.
If there’s one dish you won’t find in any restaurant in Italy, it’s Pizza Hawaii. And even here in Germany, opinions differ when it comes to the combination of ham and pineapple as a pizza topping: some love it, others hate it. A recipe for spaghetti Hawaii, which the BBC put online at the beginning of April, is currently providing new fuel in this regard. “A family-friendly pasta recipe that makes the most of tinned food,” writes the BBC editor of the quirky creation.
And not everyone likes it by a long shot. “An insult to Italian cuisine, I’m out!”. “Disgusting.” “God in heaven, what kind of horror recipe is this?” – that’s how most reactions on Facebook and Twitter to the dish, which includes ham and pineapple (both canned) and butter, onions, garlic and a “fat cream cheese”. “BBC has declared war on Italy,” writes a Twitter user of these ingredients. The BBC community is also merciless on the site, giving the Spaghetti Hawaii recipe only 1.5 out of 5 stars.
And even those who like to eat pizza with pineapple reject the recipe with the spaghetti variant. “I like Hawaiian pizza, but the thought of Hawaiian spaghetti doesn’t appeal to me at all,” wrote one Facebook user. “I like pineapple on pizza, but pasta has reached my limit,” said another user.
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What do Italians say about Spaghetti Hawaii?
But do the Italians themselves really find the dish so awful? Clearly yes. “It’s absolutely not possible,” says Rita Santomauro, who runs a hotel on the Italian island of Panarea, to TRAVELBOOK. “For us Italians, there is neither Pizza Hawaii nor Spaghetti Hawaii. Pineapple has no place in savory dishes, only in desserts.” Berlin-based former TRAVEL writer Francesco Marino is also unconvinced by the combination of pineapple and pasta. But he admits: “I’m less critical of Hawaiian pizza, I buy it frozen now and then at the supermarket, maybe for a party… I would never ask for it in restaurants: firstly, because a good pizza does not require strange combinations of ingredients. And secondly, because a real Italian pizzeria doesn’t have Hawaiian pizza on the menu.”
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Some Italians also took to Twitter under the BBC post and commented on the Spaghetti Hawaii. “Such a thing is just criminal,” writes one. “Yet proof that ‘British’ and ‘food’ don’t mix,” says another.
After all, there are some benevolent comments among the users. “Why not, I’ll give it a try,” reads one Facebook comment. “I love it,” wrote another user. Whether Spaghetti Hawaii will ever make it onto the menu of Italian restaurants remains more than doubtful.