Chyrel's Recipes From Friends

Helpful Hints How to Cook Pasta


How to Cook Pasta       

It does not matter whether it is fresh or dried, cooking pasta is one of the easiest culinary techniques to master.

Begin with plenty of cold water, 4 to 6 quarts for one pound of dry or fresh pasta.
Bring the water to a rolling boil, and then add 1-1/2 to 2 tablespoons of salt.

Although it is a matter of personal style, putting oil in the water serves no obvious purpose. After the water returns to a boil, add the pasta all at once and stir to prevent clumping.

Fresh pasta will cook much faster, 1 to 5 minutes, than dry, 8 to 14 minutes, depending on the shape. The preferred degree of doneness is firm to the bite or as the Italians call it al dente.

When the pasta is done, stop the cooking immediately by draining it in a colander. Shake the colander vigorously to get rid of trapped water.

Pasta should not be rinsed unless you are making a pasta salad. Put sauce over the pasta and serve it as soon as possible.

Finally, do not forget that one pound of dry pasta will feed six to eight, while one pound of fresh pasta will only feed four to five.

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