When you look at the hundreds of pasta forms with approximately 1300 different names, it can get pretty confusing! But back in the day, pastas were made for their funcitonality or what we would call sauce pairings. Pastas are essentially made from a type of flour and a liquid like egg or water, same ingredients just different shapes. However to explain better explain, I turned to Wikipedia for the guideline on sauce pairing.
When choosing which type of pasta and sauce to serve together, there is a general rule that must be observed. Simple sauces like pesto are ideal for long and thin strands of pasta while tomato sauce combines well with thicker pastas. Thicker and chunkier sauces have the better ability to cling onto the holes and cuts of short, tubular, twisted pastas. Sauce should be served equally with its pasta. It is important that the sauce does not overflow the pasta.
So as you sit there eating your fettucini with vodka sauce, know that it’s all about preference. Your “Italian” badge will not be revoked if you do not follow the rule of thumb. You CAN have the mostaccioli with garlic and oil(pronounced ” I owe you a yo-yo” Thanks Patti G.)!!! Although I would advise against ordering Linguini with Broccoli, garlic and oil for your daughter’s wedding shower….long pastas and oil can get pretty messy.
Remember that back in 1154, pasta shapes were made based on their functionality and how well they captured the sauce !
Don’t worry though, we won’t start making our Tuesday Special Baked Lasagna with angelhair anytime soon!!