Pasta Buying Guide

Pasta is a very popular form of food among all. It is sold in various forms and sizes all across the globe. Pasta is made out of wheat dough and water. Occasionally egg or vegetable oil is also added while preparing it. The most common way of serving pasta is with sauce. The pasta is basically available in these categories, which is dried pasta, fresh pasta and homemade pasta. When we talk of dried pasta we mean pasta which is made without the use of egg and it has a longer shelf life. The fresh pastas are the ones which needs to be refrigerated and has to be consumed within a few days of its manufacture and has a softer texture than the dried ones. The homemade pastas are similar to the fresh pastas but are made at home and have to be consumed immediately. The pasta can be found in various shapes and sizes. Some of the different types of pasta available in the market are categorized below.

Shaped Pasta

Shaped pastas are the ones which one can get in various shapes and sizes. These types of pasta basically are in the form of
  • bow ties,
  • shells,
  • spirals,
  • radiators.
This type of pasta is generally used with a simple sauce and sometimes paired up in salads as well. Types available under this category are:
  • Bumbola,
  • Campanelle,
  • Cencioni,
  • Conchiglioni,
  • Farfalle,
  • Fusillli,
  • Gnocchi,
  • Lumaconi,
  • Pipe,
  • Pizzichi,
  • Riccioli,
  • Rotelle,
  • Spiralini,
  • Umbricelli , etc.

Tubular Pasta

Tubular as the name suggests are tube shaped pastas. Some of which can be seen in long and thinner version, others could be a bit shorter in size and could also be more in width. This type of pasta is generally paired with a heavy sauce and can also be used in salads. Types available under this category are:
  • Bocconcini,
  • Calamarata,
  • Cannelloni,
  • Elbow macaroni,
  • Garganelli,
  • Macaroni,
  • Manicotti,
  • Mezze Penne,
  • Pennoni,
  • Rigatoni,
  • Tufoli, etc.

Strand Pasta Noodles

Strand pasta noodles are the type of pasta which is either round or square rod shaped. These types of pasta are available in two varieties, thick and thin. The thick variety can be used with a heavy base sauce and a simple sauce can be used with the thinner variety. Types available under this category are:
  • Angel hair,
  • Capellini,
  • Ciriole,
  • Spaghetti,
  • Vermicelli, etc

Ribbon Pasta Noodles

Ribbon Pasta Noodles are ribbon shaped flat strands. The shapes and sizes vary as per the thickness, width, and length. The type of sauce used with this type of pasta is thick and heavy for the dried ones and simple sauce for the fresh type available. Varieties available in this category are:
  • Fettuccine,
  • Lasagne,
  • Mafalde,
  • Riccia etc.

Soup Pasta

Soup Pasta can be found having very small and tiny shape. The soup pasta can be found in different shapes such as that of a star, tubes, in the form of round shaped balls, small butterflies, shapes of grains, thin long strands, and rings. The very tiny ones can be used in soups with light base and in the heavy based soups the bigger ones can be tried. Varieties available under this category are
  • Alphabets,
  • Anelli,
  • Corallini,
  • Farfalline,
  • Pearl Pasta,
  • Tubetti etc.

Stuffed Pasta

As we can all understand this kind of pastas are available with some kind of stuffing inside. The stuff used for the filling in this type of pasta can be either, a cheese filling, a filling constituting of meat or mushrooms or vegetables for the vegetarians delight. The stuffed pastas can be shaped into circles, semi-circles, squares andtriangles. The method of making such kind of pasta is, first a flat thin layered sheet is rolled out of the dough and then the filling is placed and then this sheet is folded or sealed into different shapes. These are then cooked and then served hot with a sauce of one’s choice. Some of the examples are
  • Agnolotti,
  • Manti,
  • Pansotti,
  • Tortelli, etc.

Asian Noodles

These types of pasta are predominantly famous in the Asian market and can be found in various shapes and sizes. These are usually long strand pastas and can be available in thick straight stick like structure, wavy structure, or maybe round or flat shaped. The Asian Noodles are made out of flour which could be either of wheat, soybean, rice or potato. Sometime one can find pastas made out of egg as well. The Asian noodles are generally served hot but can be eaten cold as well. This type of pasta is easily paired with soups and salads too. Some of the examples are
  • Chinese Egg Noodles,
  • Ramen,
  • Rice Macaroni,
  • Rice vermicelli,
  • Tofu noodles,
  • wanton noodles, etc.

Flavors and colors

The pastas are available in different flavors which give respective color to the pasta. For instance pasta having egg flavor is slightly yellowish in color. The corn flavor has yellow color effect, the beet flavor has a magenta color effect, the wheat flavor has brown color effect, and a spinach flavor gives a green color to the pasta. And tomato color gives a red color to it.

While purchasing Pasta one must keep some points in mind as per ones requirements. One must first consider that whether one is considering to use the pasta as a side dish or as a main course meal, the type of sauce one would prefer to use with the pasta, the duration of time one is going to store the pasta and also ones personal choice as to its shape and size.

Before purchasing a pasta one must read the instructions on the packet carefully, so as to be aware of some of the basic facts before purchasing. One must be aware of the nutritional values, the expiry date and the methodology of cooking so as to buy it as per one’s own preference.

The consumer himself is the best judge while purchasing pasta for himself, by the look at the texture and the feel of the product can give him a better idea as to whether the product is good to purchase. After the first purchase upon consuming can one decide whether he prefers this type or the other type of the pasta, so go easy on the quantity purchased for the first time.

Related Appliances

  • Pasta Maker.
  • Pasta Cooker.
  • Ravioli Maker.
  • Pasta Roller.
  • Pasta Set.
  • Pasta Drying Rack.
  • Pasta System.
  • Pasta Steamer.