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At National Pasta we talk about pasta all day every day and we tend to forget that not everyone does that. We highly recommend, it though, it makes for some lively and delicious discussion. Since it’s our job, not yours, to know everything about pasta, we’d like to clear some up some misconceptions about the preparation and quality of pasta here in this handy reference blog post.

Myth #1:

When your spaghetti sticks to the wall, it’s perfectly cooked. Let’s start with what is probably the most widespread rumour of them all. When your spaghetti sticks to your wall all it means is you’ve got a mess to clean up. Pasta is full of starch which, long story short, becomes sticky when it gets boiled. Pasta cooking in water is pretty sticky so your spaghetti will stick to the wall before, after, and when perfectly done. Follow directions on packaging or in your recipe book and taste test along the way. If you find your pasta sticking to itself try cooking it in a larger pot. Perfectly cooked pasta depends entirely on individual preference, but the chef gets to make the final decision!

Myth #2:

Add oil to the water to prevent the pasta from sticking together. This one’s a bit tricky because yes, that’s what will happen, but for best results we don’t recommend it. As you recall from Myth #1, sticky pasta is normal and generally a good thing because the sticky starch not only helps the sauce adhere to the pasta, it can also add some body to the sauce itself. If you’re making pasta salad you may want smoother noodles, in which case a quick rinse with cold water should do the trick.

Myth #3:

Salting the water makes it boil faster. At most, adding salt to the water will make it boil hotter, making it take longer to boil at all. However, in order to achieve a hotter boiling point you would have to add an awful lot of salt. Salting pasta water is for seasoning only. Look at the ingredients on a package of pasta, or even a recipe, and you’ll notice a distinctive lack in flavouring. That’s what the sauce is for! But a lot of people enjoy that sea water-esque flavour, hence the salted water.

Myth #4:

Pasta is unhealthy. Everything in moderation! Pasta can be a nutritious part of a healthy diet as long as you adhere to appropriate portions and especially if you load your dish up with vegetables. Read labels so that you know exactly how much one portion is and don’t be afraid to measure that amount onto your plate. You can even choose pasta to suit your individual dietary needs including whole grain, gluten free, and extra protein like our Healthy Grains Red Lentil Rotini.

Myth #5:

It’s difficult to find quality pasta in southern Ontario. It’s easier than ever! Stop by one of National Pasta’s shop locations in Cambridge and Guelph. And keep an eye on our website – online store coming very soon!

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Cambridge Store (Head Office)
25 Struck Court Unit 3
Cambridge, ON
N1R 8L2

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