Pasta is the ultimate comfort food, but knowing the best way to prepare it can get tricky. Salt the water? Rinse the cooked noodles? The controversy abounds, so we turned to some major names in the world of pasta: Chef Carmine Di Giovanni of New York’s Aunt Jake’s, Glenn Rolnick, executive chef at Carmine’s and Taste of Home’s trusty Test Kitchen experts.
Mistake 1: Cooking too much, or too little, pasta
Pasta expands when it’s cooking, so it can be hard to gauge how much you’re actually making. Here’s a tip: Tightly pack long noodles (think spaghetti and angel hair) in the opening of an empty, clean soda bottle to measure one portion. For smaller pastas like macaroni, filling a closed fist with dry noodles will give you about one cup cooked. Take a look at Taste of Home’s handy pasta measuring guide, here.