Monday, March 19, 2007

The Nature of Pasta

Have you ever thought about all of the different pasta shapes there are in the world? There are hundreds! Here are just a few:

Penne, Orzo, Riccioli, Rigatoni, Cannelloni, Tortellini, Casarecce, Farfalle, Fusilli, Pappardelle, Reginette, Lumaconi, Orsetti, Ditaloni, Farfalline, Grattugiata, Midolline, Stelline, Ravioli, Lasagna, Tagliatelle, Tagliatelline or Fettuccine...

I have always chosen pasta according to the shape of it, the look I wanted or what the recipe requires. Here are some interesting findings in choosing the right shaped pasta for a sauce:

Ribbon Pastas:(fettuccine, linguine, tagliatelle, spaghetti) work well with thin sauces. If the sauce is chunky, it is more difficult to eat on a ribbon pasta due to the need to roll the pasta onto a fork.

Open,Flat shapes:(bowties, etc) are good for chunkier sauces.

Scoop Shapes:(shells, cavatelli, etc) are used where the sauce needs to get inside the shape in order to taste the pasta and sauce in one bite. Thicker sauces (but not chunky) or baked pastas work well.

Closed Shapes:(penne, trenne, macaroni, etc) are good to use with heavy sauces. Baked sauces that will thicken while cooking work well. As the mixture bakes, the sauce will seep into the pasta shape where it will thicken. The final result is a "stuffed" pasta full of the sauce.

Spirals:(fusillia, radiatore, etc) are the best pasta to hold their shape. They are also great to use with chunky sauces as their shape "hook" on to the sauce pieces.

Just some things to consider when you are working with the nature of pasta!


Pasta Picture Participants:
DaVinci Angel Hair Nest; Barilla Fettuccine; Barilla Pappardelle, Whole Foods 365 Orzo


Anonymous Kristen said...

What a brilliant post... love the photos along with it!

5:10 PM  
Blogger cookiecrumb said...

That was sporktacular.

6:14 PM  
Blogger Liz at Buffalo said...

When I got to work today I encountered a very unpleasant co-worker interaction as soon as I walked in. I almost turned right around to leave. Suffice to say, I was in a bad mood for quite a while. On a whim I looked at your blog, and the pictures of pasta enjoying the outdoors were so unexpected and fun and beautiful, it turned my day around. Hooray for pasta! Thank you!!

6:20 PM  
Blogger matt said...

The use of pasta juxtaposed against a harsh and unforgiving nature brings about thoughts of the dichotomy between - oh hell! The sgetti is real purty.

6:50 PM  
Blogger Jeanne said...

I like the idea of you going outside and wondering, "Now, where can I pose this pasta?..."

7:40 AM  
Blogger Fer said...

Kristen-Thank you for your comment! I had so much fun with the photos!
Cookie crumb-Thank you so much!
Liz! I am so glad the post gave you a smile! Thanks for reading!
Matt-I think the noodles really appreciated a day outside.
Jeanne-That is exactly what I did! I have to say it was so much fun. I find the posts I always enjoy the most doing are on a whim!


9:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

haha that is genius!

1:32 PM  

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