7 Essential Pasta Tools & Equipment Every Home Cook Should Have
If pasta is a staple in your house, then you should be appropriately kitted out in terms of kitchen equipment. This list looks to do away with forks being used to desperately stab at cooking pasta (while simultaneously trying to avoid burns) and sieves being used to strain pasta. If you’re serious about your pasta, you should be serious about the tools you use to make it. Here are our 7 non-negotiable essential pasta tools that every home cook should have.
Essential Pasta Tool Number 1: Pasta Machine
Look, let’s not beat around the bush. Dried pasta really is the best thing sliced bread because it saves all last minute mid-week meals and fridge raids. But if you’re cooking pasta over the weekend, or for a dinner party, it’s time to up your game. Fresh pasta is easy and delicious, try our recipe here – you won’t regret it. So if you’re making your own pasta, a pasta machine is rather important. You could roll the dough with a rolling pin, but to ensure your dough is even and well-laminated, you’ll need the machine.
Essential Pasta Tool Number 2: Large Pot
Here’s the deal, your pasta is made of a dough. This dough will soften once it’s placed in the water, so you need a large pot to ensure there’s enough swirling space so that the dough isn’t forced together into one big clump. So, fill your large pot with lots of water and bring it to the boil before adding the pasta. If you’re concerned that your pot isn’t large enough to accommodate all of your pasta comfortably, add a good splash of olive oil, which will help to prevent the pasta from sticking together.
Essential Pasta Tool Number 3: Lots of salt
We don’t need to harp on about the importance of seasoning your food. Adding salt to your water is just as non-negotiable. If you skip seasoning the water, your pasta will not absorb the flavour of your sauce, leaving you with an overall bland dish. Some Italians say that the water should taste like the sea. We’re not sure if that’s official, but it works for us. And don’t feel pressured to use your expensive sea salt – table salt or even coarse sea salt will work as well.
Essential Pasta Tool Number 4: Olive oil
Pasta and olive oil go together like Beyonce and Jay-Z. Whether adding it to your fresh pasta dough or drizzling over the finished dish, olive oil elevates any dish. As mentioned above, it is quite handy to add a splash of oil to your cooking water. It will not only help to prevent the pasta from sticking together but will also add a certain richness to it.
Check out our favourite local olive oils HERE.
Essential Pasta Tool Number 5: Pasta Spoon
While this piece of equipment may sound extra fancy, you probably already have one in your kitchen drawer. If you’re cooking short pasta like penne, a pasta spoon is great for swirling in between the pieces to prevent them from sticking. It’s also handy for pulling pieces out of the water to taste for doneness. Also, never forget the usefulness of using the centre hole to measure out dried spaghetti. You’ll never cook too much pasta again. Although that’s never been a real problem, has it?
Essential Pasta Tool Number 6: Colander
When the time comes to remove your pasta from the water, there is truly only one sane way to do it. With a colander in the sink. If you need to keep your pasta water to add to the sauce, simply find a bowl large enough to fit underneath your colander. This is the most efficient way of draining pasta, as once it’s cooked you’ll need to get it out of the water quickly to avoid overcooking.
Essential Pasta Tool Number 7: Tongs
Tongs make for another great way of picking up pasta mid-cooking process to check for doneness, but they’re also the best way to plate up long pasta like spaghetti. If you’re the fancy kind of person, you can make pretty little swirls of pasta on each serving plate. A pair with a silicone covered tips works best.
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