Welcome to your monthly morcel of pasta goodness.
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In this edition: a brand new discovery I made just last month - 10-minute cheese n' pepper spaghetti. So scrummy, so quick... so what're you waiting for? Plus a bunch more pasta Qs answered and some great pasta-buying advice from Italian chefs.
Pastastic Matt - firstname.lastname@example.org
"The strands of spaghetti were vital, almost alive in my mouth, and the olive oil was singing with flavor. It was hard to imagine that four simple ingredients [olive oil, pasta, garlic and cheese] could marry so perfectly."
Ruth Reichl, 'Tender at the Bone' (1998)
This is really quite a find - a traditional and utterly delicious Italian spaghetti dish that's prepped, cooked and on your plate in ten minutes flat. Really. 10 minutes - I'm not being economical with the truth, it's that quick.
It's super cheesy (distinctive Italian pecorino cheese to be precise), packs in a peppery punch, and is called spaghetti cacio e pepe in Italian. It's stupidly well known in the Old Country, so it's strange (read: a bit embarassing) that it's taken me 4 years of pasta website building to discover it.
But better late than never! Check it out.
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What do real Italian chefs look for when buying packet pasta?
Here's a great article any pasta lover should read...
It's from the wonderfully intellectual Q&A site Quora.com (think Yahoo! Answers but without the dross), and on this page a range of Italian chefs - both amateur and professional - discuss what they look for when choosing which packet pasta brand to buy.
For example it includes tips like:
• "Buy a pasta with a roughened surface (enhanced by brass drawing dies instead of steel) for the sauce to stick."
• "The more yellow (in color) the (egg) pasta, the better."
Just wonderful stuff. Visit the page.
5 Reader Questions
The latest pasta posers to be published (and answered) on my site:
How to ensure lasagne remain safe to eat at a Summer bake sale?
Why does my pasta dough taste like eggs?
Is the Imperia pasta machine the same as the Cucina Pro pasta machine?
How to cook fresh pasta to make cannelloni & how to make ziti?
How long do I cook lasagna in a 9x13x4 pan?
Get Pastastic - The Recipe Book!
If you like the pasta recipes on my site, why not grab the digital cookbook to read offline and print my recipes when you need them?
This 125-page beast of a book (in instant download PDF format) is packed full of authentic Italian meals, including some exclusives that are not on the site, all explained in plain English using my fool-proof step-by-step guides.
In addition to versions of all my mamma-in-law's best pasta dishes, from bolognese to ragu, lasagna and many more, Pastastic - The Recipe Book also includes:
- 4 additional recipe ebooks
- my Lasagna 101 expert guide
- and... 2 series of exclusive downloadable videos (on how to make your own pasta and green pesto).
Grab your copy for just $7.95 here!
What readers say...
“Pastastic is easy easy easy! The recipes are a delight and taste delicious. Their simplicity and the wide variety is ideal for anyone who loves to cook something tasty, healthy and cheap" - Elena
"The whole package, your e-book especially, is top-quality. You really did a great job" - Penny
“Your recipe book is a treasure trove of easy-to-make dishes. You just make life simple for pasta lovers." - Maria
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Ciao for now. Until next time!