Hello and welcome to this long overdue and calorie-packed edition of Pastastic!
Here are the juicy goodies you can find inside:
An Italian housewife gets the cheesy blues.
New pages this month: a video ravioli shaping guide, zucchini pasta, a reader's fave homemade sauce, plus two pasta machine reviews.
Fancy a trip?
These Italian cooking school recommendations could make for a seriously lip-smacking break.
Pinci pasta defined, lots on drying and keeping freshly made pasta, and tips on how a small foodie business might sell frozen lasagna.
Reader Reviews: Norpro pasta maker
The debate rages on this little-known Imperia alternative.
I hope you enjoy this issue as much as I enjoyed creating it.
Any questions or feedback? Just click my name below to send me a mail.
Pastastic Matt - firstname.lastname@example.org
"I wouldn't exactly call it 'cooking' but I can make noodles. That means I can boil water, put the pasta in and wait until it's done" - Devon Werkheiser
Pastastic Recipe Book - prepare for a GREAT intro deal!
The official Pastastic recipe book will be launched next month, and as a much-valued Pastastic subscriber you can expect to enjoy a great introductory price for 2 weeks only... 30% less than a normal web visitor would pay!
For just $7.99 you'll be able to grab this 120-page 'easy-print' e-book packed full of clearly explained pasta recipes (some of which are not even on the site).
Plus this book comes with several great FREE bonuses, including:
• 2 downloadable video series (making fresh pasta & pesto)
• a fool-proof 'Lasagna 101' mini-guide
• and no less than 4 additional mini recipe ebooks spanning desserts, French food and more.
How do you buy it? Just look out for another Pastastic email in the next two or three weeks. It will include all the details and full buying and downloading instructions.
Italian housewife gets the cheesy blues
When cheese goes wrong, it goes real wrong... 79,000 balls of wrong!
Mozzarella is supposed to be white, right? Well that's not what one Turin housewife discovered when she ripped open a pack recently.
The Smurf-style fromage she spied inside had, for some reason, turned blue through exposure to the air.
'Mozza' being such an important foodstuff in the land of the boot, what did she do? Go back to the shop or tell a friend? Nope, she only called the Police!
A few short phonecalls later and the Italian Health Ministry had activated the 'European Rapid Alert' system (I'm not making this up), warning all countries in the EU about this possible food risk.
Turns out however that the "blue tinge" was caused by a bacterium rather than a toxin. So stress over... now, pizza anyone?
Video Guide: Making Ravioli (Pansotti)
The process of making ravioli or ‘pansotti’ shapes using fresh pasta dough is very simple indeed, particularly the half-moon shaped versions (AKA 'pansotti') I explain in this quick guide. All you need to do is choose your filling!
Springtime Zucchini Pasta
This dish is truly a springtime delight. Called ‘spaghetti con fiori di zucchini’ (spaghetti with zucchini flowers) in Italian, it really benefits from a trip to your local fresh-veg market as the better the ingredients the tastier the result.
Review: Marcato Atlas Pasta Maker
Billed as the most versatile pasta maker on the market, this sturdy steel beauty costs more than the Prime Pacific below, but should last longer too. For pure quality choose this or Imperia's SP150.
Review: Prime Pacific Pasta Roller Machine
Unlike its more expensive Imperia and Atlas competitors, this pasta roller from Prime Pacific is designed firmly with value-seekers in mind. So if you're planning your first foray into fresh pasta making, take a look.
Reader Recipe: Green Bean Pasta Primavera
Another great sunny, warm-weather dish courtesy of Rita from Port Coquitlam in Canada. She whips this crunchy winner up in less than 30 mins. You'll need at least a full pound of fresh whole green beans (frozen works too), and whatever pasta you prefer.
Reader Recipe: Mom’s Homemade Spaghetti Sauce Recipe
Jennifer Loganathan in New York chips in with a family favorite full of tomatoes and cheese. I'm thinking it's hardly free from calories, but if you love the same ingredients she does, you just might love it.
Got your own family favorite recipe?
Why not share it with the world? I know my 700+ Pastastic! readers would love to read it!
Submit your pasta recipe here.
Fancy a trip?
If you are planning your next vacation and Italy is on the 'possibles' list, why not combine your love of Italian food with a relaxing break by heading off on an Italian cooking holiday?
I have just the page to get you started: here at my new Italian Cooking Schools section.
Click to check out a neat little range of schools based across Italy, offering everything from full 10-day cooking tours of the country through to single-day gourmet sessions and market visits that anyone with a big appetite will love.
A small batch of recent queries received through my site. If any of these pesky posers have been bugging you too, just click to read my response.
Where can I find pinci pasta?
How can I go about selling frozen lasagna?
How long will homemade pasta keep?
Do spaghetti, linguine, and 'angel hair' pasta taste the same?
Do you taste the egg in fresh egg pasta? And more...
Got a pasta question? Ask it here.
Reader Reviews: Norpro pasta maker
While Marcato's Atlas pasta maker and Imperia's excellent SP150 machine are probably the two best-selling manual pasta makers on the market, Norpro's machine is also widely available.
But do Pastastic's readers love or hate it?
The jury is out...
FOR: D Brown from Calgary, CA
AGAINST: Joy Jameson from San Francisco
Check out its Amazon reviews here.
Or if you own this machine, tell us your thoughts here.
Find Me On Facebook
Did I mention? Pastastic is now doing the foodie do on Facebook.
If you become a fan you'll get a News Feed update whenever I post a new scrummy recipe, story or interesting link. And I promise not to bug you with more than 2 per week.
You can also comment on recipes, add photos, upload videos, whatever you like really. It's really an open forum I hope every pasta lover will enjoy.
Simply click the image below, then 'Like' the Pastastic page.
And in case you missed it last time, I'm Twittering too. Find me here:
Missed your 5 Simple Starters recipe book?
Right-click here to save it to your PC.
Get site updates via email here
Like the idea of building a business online? Try this free ebook.
Get in touch with me here.
Ciao and buon appetito<>!
Have your say about this page! Just add a comment in the box below.