St. Louis cuisine

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St. Louis cuisine is the food culture of the Greater St. Louis area.

History and composition[edit]

St. Louis has a history going back to an early French settlement in 1764.[1]

St. Louis cuisine[edit]

A number of foods are specific to, or known to have originated in St. Louis.[2]

St. Louis-style pizza[edit]

St. Louis has a variation of pizza known as St. Louis-style pizza, which features provel cheese, a very thin crust, and is often square cut.

St. Louis Gooey butter cake[edit]

Gooey butter cake (also more recently known as "ooey gooey butter cake") is a type of cake traditionally made in, and invented in, St.Louis. It is served locally as a breakfast pastry, though also served as a dessert.

Toasted ravioli[edit]

Toasted ravioli, from The Hill

Toasted ravioli may have originated in Sicily, where fried ravioli containing a sweet filling is a traditional Christmas time dish "commonly referred to as meat pillows."[3][4] However, most accounts of the first toasted ravioli can be traced to the Italian neighborhood, known as "The Hill", of St. Louis, Missouri, in the United States.

Many claims have been made as to the original creation of toasted ravioli in the United States. One account attributes it to Oldani's in St. Louis, MO. The restaurant was located where Mama's "On The Hill" restaurant is now, on the St. Louis Hill at 2132 Edwards Street. As the story goes, the delicacy was stumbled upon when a ravioli from wholesaler Mama Toscano's was accidentally dropped into the fryer by Chef Fritz. "Mickey Garagiola, older brother of Major League Baseball Hall-of-Famer Joe Garagiola, was actually at the bar during the mishap and was the first to taste the accidental treat."[5] Shortly after, the item began appearing on menus across "The Hill" neighborhood of St. Louis. Meanwhile, many chefs on The Hill stake their claims:[6] Another popular claim revolves around Charlie Gitto's "On The Hill" restaurant (then known as "Angelo's"). According to that tale, in 1947, a chef at Angelo's accidentally dropped the pasta into oil instead of water.[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Niderost, Eric. "St. Louis Gateway To The Great Beyond." Wild West 14.1 (2001): 42. MasterFILE Premier. Web. 12 March 2015.
  2. ^ Top Five St. Louis Signature Foods
  3. ^ Rodgers, Rick; Christopher Hirsheimer (1999). Fried & True: Crispy and Delicious Dishes from Appetizers to Desserts. Chronicle Books. p. 41. ISBN 0-8118-1606-0. 
  4. ^ An article by Linda Cicero ("Cook's Corner: Meet me in St. Louis for `toasted' ravioli") in the 2007-02-07 Miami Herald observed that Linda Stradley's book, I'll Have What They're Having; Legendary Local Cuisine (2002) ISBN 0-7627-1146-9 states that St. Louis is "the only city in the United States to produce this". According to Cicero, Stradley says that toasted ravioli is popular around Christmas.
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^ Delano, Patti (2006). Missouri. Globe Pequot. p. 12. ISBN 0-7627-4203-8.