What is Pasta?
Pasta is the heart of Italian cooking, the key ingredient of Italy's cuisine from North to South. With over 300 different known shapes, pasta can be divided into 2 main categories:
- Dried pasta: Pasta secca, in Italian. Whether produced commercially or handmade, it is dried, packaged, sold in stores, and has a long shelf life. Think about spaghetti, penne, fusilli, bucatini, dried fettuccine and lasagna sheets. Dried pasta contains only about 10% - 12% of water.
- Fresh pasta: Pasta fresca, in Italian. It can be made with or without eggs, it can be stuffed or plain. Ravioli, tortellini, fresh fettuccine, cannelloni are just a few examples. Fresh pasta contains about 25% - 30% of water.
In this Guide, we will focus on fresh homemade pasta, the most authentic expression of Italy's regional cuisine.
Content Published in This Guide
Italian homemade pasta is such a vast and rich topic that it would be impossible to cover in a single cooking class. There are many different dough recipes, hundreds of pasta shapes, traditional pasta-making tools, not to mention the local stories behind each. This is why we have created this Guide so that you can learn everything there is to know on this fascinating topic at your own pace!
Whether you're a first-timer or a seasoned expert, we will guide you step by step. As you learn and understand, you will become more and more confident when preparing fresh homemade pasta for your family and friends.
The content in this Guide includes:
- understanding the flours used to make pasta
- 3 different basic dough recipes
- 1 eggless dough recipe to make fettuccine, ravioli, and more
- 4 naturally-colored dough recipes
- how to make 20 different pasta shapes
- how to properly knead the dough
- how to roll and fold the dough
- how to use a pasta machine
- how to cut and close stuffed pasta
- how to make colored striped pasta
- learning to use the different pasta and ravioli-making tools
- how to store fresh pasta (fridge, freezer, dry)
- how to cook dried pasta
- how to cook fresh pasta
- how to cook stuffed pasta
- understanding the pasta traditions in Italy