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Therefore - no need to add oil. 3. Not adding salt to the water Because we are constantly warned about the perils of salt in our diet many cooks will add only a tiny pinch of salt or none at all to the cooking water. This is a mistake. Pasta needs plenty of salt because salt "roughs up" the surface and keeps it from becoming slimy. Add about a teaspoon of salt per each gallon of water. This seems like a lot but every good Italian chef cooks it this way and it really does make a difference. And here s the good news: The pasta does not absorb salt in the same way that vegetables or potatoes do so you will not be eating all the salt that you use in the cooking water. The exception to the add plenty of salt rule is when cooking fresh pasta which does not need salted water.
When you walk down the pasta aisle in the market how do you choose which pasta to buy and which to use for what purpose? There are flat pastas round pastas hollow pastas and twisted pastas. There is pasta that is made to look like rice (Italian orzo) and pasta that resembles gnocchi (potato dumplings). There are shells and tubes and then there is pasta that is made into shapes to fit the season. Do you want to serve your pasta with tomato sauce Alfredo Sauce (cream sauce) primavera (with lightly grilled spring vegetables? Do you want stuffed pasta and if so what do you stuff it with? Do you want pasta that is made from semolina ordinary flour or gluten free such as corn or rice pasta? Do you want squid ink pasta spinach pasta or tomato pasta or just plain pasta? The more you learn about pasta the more there is to know and the more bewildered you can get. The best quality pasta is made from semolina (hard durum wheat) and eggs with maybe a little salt and some olive oil thrown in.
While the casserole is cooking you can prepare a salad or any other dish to go with it. The frozen casserole will generally take about an hour to cook when placed in a cold oven. DO NOT PLACE A FROZEN CASSEROLE IN A HOT OVEN! If it is ceramic or glass it will most likely break and even if it isn t the top portion and sides of the casserole will cook before the inside is heated through and become dried out. When cooking pasta use a large pot with at least 3-4 quarts of salted water (depending on how much pasta is to be cooked). The water should be brought to a full boil before adding the pasta. One to two tablespoons of salt should be added to the water. This will not only help to add flavor to the pasta but will increase the heat of the water allowing the pasta to cook at a faster rate.