That one word invokes so many reactions- Mouth watering, stomach growling, and of course an instant celebration dance by the kids. This staple of Italian cuisine has definitely taken over the world! But choosing pasta from the 500 odd varieties available in the market today can be so overwhelming. Even while ordering in restaurants, some of the names just sound so alien, that you end up ordering the SAME old dish. At the supermarket you will most often reach for the same bag of pasta, and if it is not available, just grab the nearest bag that IS available thinking…”how is it going to make a difference…its all pasta ANYWAY”…..right? WRONG! The shape and size of the pasta determines its ability to ‘hold’ the pasta sauce, whatever kind it may be. Thus, different pastas when teamed with the RIGHT kind of sauce can take the dish to a whole other level. So we are talking 500 different kinds of pasta, so many shapes and sizes and each with its own sauce? So WHERE do you start? Well….you start right here!! A general rule of thumb to follow here is ‘Thick’ pastas go well with ‘thick’ sauces and ‘thin’ pastas go well with light or ‘thin’ sauces.
Below Mentioned Are 10 Most Popular Types Of Pasta
One of the most common and popular kind, spaghetti looks like thin strings or twine. Another from the same family is Linguine. It is similar to spaghetti, but where spaghetti is rounded, this is slightly flattened. Both these kind of pastas can be excellently teamed with cream or oil based sauces, light seafood sauces and tomato based sauces.
This is also a long pasta like spaghetti but it is ribbon-cut, meaning it looks like a ribbon on the plate about 6.5 mm wide. A ribbon cut pasta wider than a fettuccine his is called Pappardelle and a thinner one is called a Tagliatelle. All 3 of these pastas hold rich and meaty sauces very well owing to their ‘thick’ shape.
A lasagne is basically thin sheets of pasta which are usually layered in a dish with a thick sauce and then baked.
These are a twisty, cork-screw shaped pasta. They go especially well with lighter smoother sauces, which cling to the twists (like a pesto sauce).
A quintessential kids favourite, this pasta looks like bent tubes. Apart from the usual mouth-watering cheesy sauces of the famous ‘mac and cheese'(yum!), this also goes well with hearty vegetable sauces and a ragu.
This is also a kind of tube pasta, which has ridges all over and are cut diagonally at both ends resembling the ‘quill pen’ of olden times. This one also being hollow, teams well with hearty sauces as the pasta is really able to ‘hold’ the sauce. Ragus, bolognese, creamy and cheesy sauces, the thicker the better!!
Similar to a penne pasta, a rigatoni has square cut ends (instead of diagonal). Similar kind of sauces work with this one too.
Resembling sea-shells, this kind of pasta makes for a very interesting pairing with heavy cream and meaty sauces. Bigger shells or “Conchiglioni” can even be stuffed.
This is basically a large cylinder pasta, which can be stuffed with a filling inside, finished off with a sauce on top and then baked.
These bow-tie shaped pastas look really pretty on the plate, and are best suited to cream and tomato based dishes.
So go on ahead to the supermarket with your head held high and pick up that bag of pasta that you’ve never tried before, and cook up that perfectly-paired pasta sauce. Simply pasta-licious!!!!!
‘Buon Appetito’ everyone!!!!