The Nostalgic Strawberry Pasta Enjoyed In Poland

pasta with strawberry cream
pasta with strawberry cream - Tatyana Berkovich/Getty Images

In America, we typically consider pasta to be a savory dish. We traditionally pile our pasta high with meats, cheeses, and veggies. The only fruit you'll see on most American pasta is tomato, a fruit commonly mislabeled as a vegetable. But in Poland, pasta is a base for a refreshingly sweet meal. A classic pasta dish in Poland is Makaron z truskawkami, which translates to pasta with strawberries. This nostalgic dish features smashed strawberries mixed with sugar and sour cream. This strawberry mixture, similar to a simple strawberry compote, is then spooned on top of pasta.

Makaron z truskawkami is a childhood staple for many Polish people. It is served as part of the school lunch rotation for students and is enjoyed frequently during the height of the strawberry season. You can almost think of it as a sweet pasta salad. Strawberries are among the most popular fruits in Poland, so their status as a multipurpose ingredient isn't a big surprise among the Polish. Strawberry pasta is typically eaten as a light lunch or a sweet dessert.

The concept of sweet spaghetti is not limited to just Poland. In Germany, there is the pasta-inspired dessert spaghettieis. This dish features vanilla ice cream put through a ricer that mimics the shape of spaghetti noodles.

Read more: 44 Types Of Pasta And When You Should Be Using Them

How Did Macaroni With Strawberry Become So Popular?

hands holding strawberries
hands holding strawberries - Vitalii Stock/Shutterstock

This dish is often lauded for its nostalgic properties, hinting that strawberry pasta has been enjoyed for at least a few decades by this point. A Redditor on r/Poland commented that the dish was "from a socialist era, where many products were hard to get," implying that this dish may have originated as a means of survival. While there is no concrete evidence to back this claim up, looking at the simplicity of the ingredients in Makaron z truskawkami, it would make sense if this dish came together due to Polish people utilizing the ingredients they had at their disposal. The Polish are not the only ones to use strawberries as a pasta sauce. In the 16th century in Italy strawberries were used as a sauce on ocassion. This would have been before tomatoes were fully integrated into Italian cuisine.

It's also important to recognize that strawberries appear in a variety of recipes you might not traditionally expect. Strawberries are stuffed inside homemade pierogies, turned into a gazpacho-like strawberry soup, and combined with rice pudding. These recipes showcase the many unique ways the Polish make the most of their strawberry season. Poland is also known as a world producer of strawberries, making strawberries a beloved treat and a major Polish export.

Read the original article on Tasting Table.