By Rani Chehal-Bassi
Most of us are well aware of the various foods that different cities in North America are known for. Some examples are; Chicago being known for deep dish pizza, Boston for its baked beans and clam chowder, New Orleans for gumbo, Tampa for the Cuban sandwich and Seattle for coffee… but how many of us know that one of the things that the Canadian city of Montreal is infamous for is Pizzaghetti?
On a recent trip to Montreal, Canada, we received a text message from a friend saying, “Make sure you find some Pizzaghetti while you are there!” They weren’t talking about my favorite satirical deity known as the ‘Flying Spaghetti Monster.’ This was about an even more elusive and edible phenomena that actually existed. We immediately asked the concierge at our somewhat higher-end hotel where we could get our hands on some. They seemed confused as to what we could possibly be referring to. So we began our own search through the busy downtown streets. We were encountered with let down after let down for what seemed like hours, as we curiously ducked into various restaurants in all parts of the city. Finally, as we decided to give up and return to the hotel, we spotted a pizza shop mere steps away from our starting point, advertising the mysterious meal that we had been informed about.
First, we found out that Pizzaghetti was mainly known as a popular fast food style meal. It’s the type of grub that you get after a late night of partying or when looking for a quick and inexpensive bite to eat. Our first mistake was going to all the higher budget eateries around town. It was simply known as a convenience food. Pizzaghetti is a combo meal, offered in a lot of family restaurants throughout Quebec. Although both pizza and spaghetti are staples in Italy, it’s not anything you would see there as a combination dish, nor do you find it in many other places in the world.
In the end, we had concluded that Pizzaghetti was just the mix of a pizza and spaghetti, but it can come in 3 forms; Pizza with spaghetti served on the same plate, pizza with spaghetti sauce on top or pizza baked with spaghetti as its main topping. There are plenty of places to try it out in the city, but don’t go expecting fancy restaurant-style dining. Due to the fact that Montreal is mainly a French speaking city, our search was a bit more difficult, but we did end up finding that a lot of residents spoke English as well. I sincerely hope your search for Pizzaghetti will be prosperous and plentiful to your belly when you make your visit, because regardless of its simplicity… this concoction is a tourist temptation to be had!