Turn Leftover Lasagna Noodles Into Delicious Pasta Crackers

While lasagna (the dish) will save dinner, lasagna (the noodle) will prove equally heroic for throwing together small bites and snacks with little effort and time. So when cravings strike next, think outside the layers and try these five, noodle-filled bites.

Source: 5 Surprising Ways to Snack on Lasagna Noodles

I like to cook lasagna a day or so before I plan on eating it.  The leftover noodles never go to waste as I always reserve a part of the sauce and some cheese for making lasagna noodle roll-ups after the lasagna has been constructed and put in the oven. Very messy and very, very tasty!

Soak Pasta Instead of Boiling It for Easier Baked Pasta Dishes

Here’s something I’ve always wondered: when baking pasta, as in, say, lasagna or baked ziti, why do you always cook the pasta first? Aren’t you inviting trouble by cooking it once, then proceeding to put it in a casserole and cooking it again? Well, there’s the obvious first part of the answer to this question: pasta needs to absorb water as it cooks—a lot of water, around 80 percent of its own weight when perfectly al dente. So, add raw pasta directly to a baked pasta dish, and it will soften all right—it’ll also suck up all of the moisture from the sauce, leaving it dry or broken.

Source: The Food Lab: For Easier Baked Ziti, Soak, Don’t Boil Your Pasta

I thought the pasta drew moisture from the sauce.  It does… resulting in dry sauce. I’ve always wondered about those pastas marketed as not needing to be boiled first—how are they different from regular pasta or is this just some marketing ploy? Anyway, traditionally recipes recommend boiling the pasta first.

Add Grated Cheese to Pasta Before the Sauce to Mix It in Better

The Silver Spoon, originally published in English by Phaidon in 2005, was the first cookbook Phaidon published and the first cookbook Emilia Terragni, the publisher of Phaidon’s cookbooks and architecture books, ever worked on. The tome has gone on to sell so many copies and be one of the most essential Italian cookbooks around. To celebrate its 10th anniversary of the English edition (and the revision of The Silver Spoon: Quick and Easy Recipes), Emilia has picked out the lessons she finds indispensable from the very big, comprehensive Silver Spoon.

Source: The Greatest Hits & Tips from The Silver Spoon Cookbook

I’m odd, I actually prefer my cheese cold, hard and on top. The contrast in temperature and texture to the past is what I enjoy. I’ll even sprinkle it on a little bit at a time for max effect.

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy melted cheese too, in some dishes I prefer it, but most times I prefer the above.

Microwave a Complete Spaghetti Squash Dinner In 15 Minutes

Your favorite pasta impersonator just got a whole lot easier to make. In about 15 minutes in the microwave, you can turn a rock-hard spaghetti squash into a bowl of tender “noodles,” ready for some sauce. I’ll even throw in a trick for making it easier to slice the squash in half. What are you waiting for?

Source: How to Cook Spaghetti Squash In the Microwave

Typically I just quarter it, remove any seeds, etc and throw it in some boiling water for ~10 minutes. Pull them out, let them cool, hand squeeze the water out, and use a fork to pull the noodles.

I also love cutting acorn squash in half, adding a little butter and throwing it in the microwave for a minute or two. It’s already in a bowl and it’s really easy to clean up.

Science is Now Developing a Pill to Help Celiac Sufferers Eat Gluten

In what can only be described as great news for both sufferers of Celiac Disease and anyone who hates people who insist they can’t eat gluten while downing an entire plate of spaghetti, science appears to be on the verge of delivering us an actual pill that will allow those with Celiac to eat gluten.

Source: Science is Now Developing a Pill to Help Celiac Sufferers Eat Gluten

Dare to dream… 😉

Use Cold Butter to Make a Better Butter Sauce for Pasta

Italians are pretty specific about how to cook and dress their noodles, and we urge you to adhere to our ten basic rules when cooking pasta!!

Source: The 10 Most Important Pasta Cooking Tips

Ugh, first one is about salting the water.  Don’t do that – it’s a waste of salt.

Use Wonton Wrappers for Hassle-Free Fresh Ravioli

Fresh ravioli tastes so much better, but take a lot of effort to make from scratch. Mario Batali has a shortcut to get the same deliciousness with less effort: use store-bought wonton wrappers instead of spending all day making pasta dough.

Source: Use Wonton Wrappers for Hassle-Free Fresh Ravioli

I’d been wanting to do make my own ravioli, but this sounds like a good first run to see how things go.

How to Properly Carb Load Before a Race (If You Even Need To)

Ahh, the pre-race pasta dinner. It’s not just an opportunity to bond with fellow athletes, it’s also the last remaining excuse to think of spaghetti as health food. Carb loading isn’t necessary for everyone, but if you’re one of the people who will benefit, it’s time to learn the right way to do it.

Source: How to Properly Carb Load Before a Race (If You Even Need To)

Since Allen Lim’s food science wizardry, even the Euro cycling pros are eating more rice than pasta these days.  Don’t think I’m saying this being anti-gluten crazy, organic, artisanally harvested rice by cage free workers (humor, come on), but that exercise diets have changed a WHOLE LOT in the past seven years.

It’s very interesting to hear the 1.5 hr recommendation – that means a good portion of people doing sprint triathlons do not need to carb load.  But everyone is different – I recently rode 140 KM with someone who had to consume gels/etc every hour or so, and they still had trouble after the 100 KM mark.  They have less body fat than I do, but I also wonder what their carb intake is like.  As always, see what works for you because we’re not all the same.

Add Subtle Flavor to Pasta or Salad by Rubbing the Bowl With Garlic

But Graziella’s pasta salad didn’t taste like the many I’d eaten at backyard barbecues here in the States. There was an undertone to them, a background flavor that was in every bite, but was hard to identify.

When I finally cobbled together enough Italian to ask Graziella how she made her pasta, I realized what I was tasting: garlic. But not minced or crushed or sliced garlic. No, Graziella used the essence of garlic. And she found that essence in just one clove, which she rubbed on the inside of the bowl that she’d eventually be tossing the pasta in.

Source: The Italian Secret to Great Pasta Salad

This tip probably also works because of the aroma of the garlic—our sense of smell affects our sense of taste, so picking up on the aroma can make a big difference.