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Carbohydrates though recently made out to be villains are actually necessary to keep your body and mind running smoothly. When carbohydrates are broken down they provide a major source of glucose. Glucose is the primary source of energy for your body and the only source of energy for your brain. Many people who have tried to stick to very low-carb diets have suffered from low energy and bad moods. I know I would be in a bad mood if I never got to eat my favorite pastas! Consuming too many carbohydrates can be fattening but pasta itself is not fattening; cooked pasta has only about 200 calories per cup. Where you really get into trouble is with your pasta sauce. Pasta sauces that contain high calorie fatty meats creams cheese and other fattening ingredients can really make a pasta dish fattening.
Store bought pasta is one of the most convenient foods around and the dried pasta can be stored in your pantry for a very long time but fresh pasta has a delicate flavor and texture that makes it worth the extra effort. With so many fresh pastas available today why should you make your own? The main reason I like making homemade pasta is because I can control the ingredients and flavors. Store bought fresh pasta contains preservatives and chemicals that can easily be avoided when you make your own pasta. You are also limited only by your imagination when choosing the flavors of your own pasta. Homemade ravioli is best because you can fill it with anything you want and you can avoid the high fat meats common in many commercially prepared ravioli. Homemade pasta is not difficult at all to make once you learn how to make the dough and how to cut your fresh pasta into your desired shape. It is even possible to make chocolate pasta! Do you need a Pasta Machine? It is quite possible to make homemade pasta dough and simply cut it with a knife on a cutting board however a pasta machine will take the work out of some of the kneading and will give your dough a good consistency and uniform thickness.
PASTA SECRET #1: ATTITUDE Attitude is the most important aspect. We should give the greatest attention and focus to our cooking and not get distracted by other things. PASTA SECRET #2: THE WATER THE POT AND THE SALT To cook pasta we need only four things: good attitude good water good salt and good pasta. Always use a large and deep pot. No shallow or small pan for boiling pasta. The best ones are those wonderful stainless steel beauties with a very thick bottom. Puts lots of water to boil. Even if you are going to cook just for yourself a quick "spaghettata" always use at least 1 quart of water. You need 1 quarter for each 100 gr of pasta. If the water from your sink taste too much of chlorine you may want to buy a good filtration system for your kitchen. It is worth it! Regarding the salt you need 10 grams per each quarter of water in the pot. Always salt the cooking water. If salt must be eliminated for health reasons then maybe you should stick to rice for the time being. Salt is a must.