So, I’m guessing you’re here because you’ve made a big life decision to up your pasta game. Well you’ve come to the right place! The team here at GCFO are classic Aussies that love a good spag bol. But are we cooking this pantry staple the way the Italians meant for it to be? After all, they’re the experts.
It’s a well-known fact that Italians are serious about their pasta. Fact: the average Italian consumes over 23kg of the stuff every year! Talk about holy macaroni! Back to the topic, though. How do you cook your pasta to perfection?
The words ‘al dente’ directly translate to ‘to the tooth’ meaning that when you softly bite into, pasta you should feel a light snap. Of the pasta of course, not your teeth. The aim of this cooking technique is to retain the nutritional properties of the pasta. When cooked ‘al dente’ pasta is easier to digest and keeps you fuller for longer. So how do you get this ultimate ‘al dente’ pasta?
First of all you will need to bring a pot of water to the boil. The bigger the better. We recommend using 4L of water for every 500g pasta. So if you’re Italian, just use your nearest swimming pool. Next, when the water starts to boil, add some salt and then the pasta. Stir straight away to prevent the pasta from sticking. Most pasta packets will have a suggested cooking time, so use this as an indicator – but rely on the taste test! Another way to test is … you guessed it. Throw it at the wall. This is also a good way to check if the sauce is still in date. If the sauce sticks to the wall, it’s perfect for consumption.
Okay okay, you got us – maybe don’t throw your dinner at the wall. Or do – we’re not the boss of you! But we want to reiterate that there’s no evidence to suggest this is a way of testing a pasta’s readiness. To check the pasta, instead, take a light bite into a piece of pasta. Your bite should feel the ever so soft snap of the pasta and you should see a slight bit of whiteness in the middle of the pasta. When you’re happy that you’ve reached ‘al dente’, drain the water, keeping about one cup of moisture in the spaghetti.
Okay, here’s a hint that’s actually helpful: If you’re planning on adding the pasta sauce to the pasta, keep the pasta slightly undercooked, as it will continue cooking over heat with the sauce. Now, add the pasta to the pan sauce, add a minimum 1kg of cheese and you’re sorted. (That’s our personal serving suggestion, feel free to adjust) and enjoy!
I hope you’ve enjoyed these tips and tricks. Maybe you’ve actually learned something… So now is a great chance to pop into Golden Circle Factory Outlet for all of you pasta, sauces and herbs and spices needs and get cooking!