How to cook pasta

You may think that cooking pasta is something fairly simple.

May be.

But are you cooking it in the way you should? Are you really sure that it’s only a matter of boiling water?

Water

You need at least 1 litre of water for each 100g of pasta. At least means that you shouldn’t, under any circumstance, use less, but it would be advisable to use more.

The water must be boiling, a lot, with big bubbles.

Before to add the pasta and after it already began to boil, you must add salt to the water and wait until it’s boiling again before to add the pasta.

Salt

Coarse, marine salt, never, never, never table salt.

I never weight the amount of salt I use. I know how much I have to use when I have it in my hand.

Let’s say that approximately, for a pot filled with 1 litre of water I use 1/4 of an handful of salt. For a pot filled with 4-5 litres of water, a handful.

Pasta

Always use the best you can find, 100% hard wheat, bronze wire-drawn, slow drying up. Best if you choose an Italian pasta. And mind there are a lot of fake Italian pasta around: possibly choose one made in Italy.

Cooking

Pasta must be cooked al dente: that means that when your teeth bite the pasta you still have to sense a bit of hardness and the very core of your pasta must be whiter then the rest.

  1. Bring water to the boil.
  2. Add salt.
  3. Let water boil again.
  4. Add pasta and cook it until al dente. Sometimes it’s less then the minutes stated on the package, sometimes it’s more. Try it! Always!
  5. Turn off the fire, drain it immediately and serve it even sooner!

How to cook pasta

3 Comments

  1. Brava! Sounds like you know how to make a fine bowl of pasta.

    Here’s what the Italian grandmothers say, “Pasta likes to swim.” It means the pasta should have plenty of room to move around in the pot.

    And this one, “the pasta water should be as salty as the sea”.

    I’m wondering, why do you say never to use table salt?
    Grazie mille!

    • Hi Judith! Italian grandmothers are always extremely wise 🙂 Never use table salt because it will look like you are using a huge amount whilst it will be not enough! The same amount of coarse salt will salt just right you water…

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