Cooking food - Pasta

Before you start

Pasta must be cooked in a large pot using plenty of water and without the lid on.

Method

Fill a large pot (up to three-quarters full) with water using at least 1 litre (4 cups) for every 100 g. of pasta. Put on high heat and cover.

Once the water is boiling, add the salt (approximately 1,5 teaspoon of coarse salt, or 1 teaspoon of table salt, for every litre of water). The water will stop boiling but will return to a boil soon after.

When the water gets to a rolling boil, you can add the pasta. Stir immediately with a wooden spoon to prevent the pasta from sticking together or to the base of the pot. Continue to cook without the lid on and start measuring the time. Stir briefly from time to time.

The recommended cooking time is written on the box, but it is important to taste it a couple of minutes before the end. Take one sample with a fork. It must be soft on the outside but still firm inside (al dente) offering some resistance between the teeth as you bite it. Continue to cook and taste again until ready.

When the pasta is ready, drain rapidly in a colander previously placed in the kitchen sink. Shake out the water.

Comments

Pasta should not be rinsed since this would wash out the flavour and nutrients. Mix immediately with the prepared sauce.

Serve the pasta in warmed pasta bowls or dishes, but not on plates. The sloping rims of the pasta dish accomplish two important tasks: to retain heat, hence keeping the pasta warm (it gets cold quickly), and to hold the food in the dish, hence helping to roll up spaghetti elegantly using a fork against the rim without using a spoon or knife.

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