How do I...

How to cook pasta


How to cook pasta


forma
DIFFICULTY
Easy

Pasta is one of the most popular Italian foods, known and loved throughout the world. Pasta must be cooked al dente in order to be truly Italian.
 





Pasta can be made with various types of flour including wheat, rice or Kamut. Dried pasta can be further categorized based on shape: dried pasta can be short or long, flat or ridged, thin or thick. Other characteristics that can be used for classification include whether or not the dough was made with egg, whether or not it is stuffed and if the pasta should be baked in the oven.

The type of pasta you use should be based on the recipe you plan to make. Ridged pasta, for example, is best for absorbing pasta sauce.

Every type of pasta has a different cooking time. Egg pasta, for example, cooks much more quickly than dried wheat pasta. When cooking pasta, bare in mind that it will continue to cook even once it has been drained, tossed with the sauce and served. If you like your pasta al dente, or plan to finish cooking the pasta in the pan with the sauce, t is advisable to drain the pasta 2 minutes before the time indicated on the box.

The average portion size is 3.5 oz (100g) per person. If your menu includes multiple courses, consider serving only 3 oz (80g) per person.

These proportions will give the pasta plenty of room to cook in and will allow the water to come to a boil quickly.

With regards to the actual cooking process, just be sure to follow these simple steps:

- Fill a large, tall pot with water and place over high heat.
- When the water begins to boil, add salt to taste. After the salt has dissolved and the water is really boiling, add pasta to the water and stir frequently the first two minutes, then occasionally until the end of the cooking process. Before draining the pasta, taste it to see if it is cooked to your liking.
- If the pasta is “al dente,” you should feel a slight resistance when you bite into it or cut it with a fork. There should also be a thin white vein at the center.
 
As mentioned before, if you plan to toss the pasta in a pan with the sauce, you should drain it when it is al dente. If, instead, you plan to serve it with pesto, it is advisable to follow the cooking time on the box. If you plan to make a pasta salad, place the pasta in a bowl of ice water and olive oil immediately after draining to stop the cooking process.


Let us inspire you


Tomato & Basil Whole Grain Penne
Try Barilla's Tomato & Basil Whole ...

Pan-broiled Swordfish
Tasty swordfish filled with breadcrumbs, olives, ...

Barilla® Whole Grain Spaghetti with Fresh Vegetables
Create a simple and satisfying family ...

Fava Beans with Guanciale
A special side dish made with ...

Pasta Rolls with Pan Drippings
A complicated first course to make ...

Barilla® Linguine Fini with Marinara Sauce & Clams
An always impressive presentation from the ...

Spaghetti with Clams
All of the flavors of the ...

Risotto with Asparagus and Taleggio
A classic recipe that showcases asparagus.

Cinnamon Cookies
Containing no eggs, these crunchy cookies ...

Barilla® Fried Angel Hair with Red Onion, Tomatoes & Parmigiano Cheese
Surprisingly delicious, fried pasta paired with ...