There are more than 500 different pasta shapes.
Sticky Pasta: Most city tap water has been treated to be alkaline (this reduces pipe corrosion) - this 'hard water' will increase stickiness whan cooking pasta. Adding a little lemon juice or cream of tartar to the water can help to minimize stickiness when cooking pasta or noodles.
Dry pasta can be stored up to two years if kept in a tightly sealed package or a covered container in a cool, dry place.
To cook pasta, boil 4 to 6 quarts of water for 1 pound of dry pasta. Add salt if desired.
For salads, drain and rinse pasta with cold water.
If cooked pasta is not to be used immediately, drain and rinse thoroughly with cold water. Allowing the pasta to sit in water will cause it to absorb water and become mushy. When the pasta has cooled, toss lightly with salad oil to prevent it from sticking and drying out. Cover tightly and refrigerate or freeze. Refrigerate the pasta and sauce separately or the pasta will become soggy.
To reheat, put pasta in a colander and immerse in rapidly boiling water just long enough to heat through. Pasta may also be reheated in a microwave.
Allow 2 ounces of dry pasta for a side dish serving and 4 ounces for a main dish serving. Although it will vary with the shape, 1 pound of pasta will yield about 8 cups of cooked pasta.
• Thin delicate pasta should be served with light, thin sauces.
• Thicker shapes work well with heavier sauces.
• Pasta shapes with holes or ridges are best for chunkier sauces. Some shapes have ridges in which to hold sauces better.