If you combined a certain type of pasta with a sauce and find that the combination is not working well then there is a reason for the same. You should know that not every type of pasta is suited for all types of dishes.
There are more than 300 shapes in which pasta is available and it can often times become confusing to select the right combination. To get the right flavors it is important to pair pasta with the right sauce. In the following sections we'll go through these details to help you develop better understanding of pasta and sauce pairing.
Flat and long pastas such as linguine and spaghetti are capable of carrying homogenized and butter sauces very well. Additionally, sauces don't have to be texture free if they have to combine with long noodles. You need to be aware of the fact that linguine or spaghetti tend to have a natural pairing with clams and other types of seafood.
Ridged And Ruffled
Examples of such pasta include cavatappi, rotini, fusilli, cascatelli, etc. If you are looking for a type of pasta that will combine well with chunky sauces like ragu, then shapes with ruffles or ridges offer plenty of architecture for catching up pieces of vegetables or meat.
Apart from Italian sauces, you can pair these types of pasta with other types of sauces as well.
Examples of short pasta include farfalle, pipette, cavatelli, gemelli, etc. There are different short pasta types that are capable of trapping sauces. Good examples are conchiglie that is in the shape of shell and has openings in it or the orecchiette that has shallow crater.
If you are using creamy sauces, then these scoopy short pasta shapes work well with such kind of sauces. In addition, these pastas provide very good textural contrast between exterior and interior. You can also try them in cold pasta salads. Such short pasta varieties are able to hold the ingredients within their crevices. In addition, they don't break when chilled.
Examples of tube pastas include rigatoni, ziti, paccheri, penne, etc. The good thing about these is that they provide excellent textural variations. These will be able to withhold flavors of the sauce within themselves. Additionally, these tube pastas work perfectly with concentrated meat sauces. Another dish to try out is the carbonara by using rigatoni.
Examples of tiny pasta include acini, risi, anelletti, fregula, ditalini, etc. These are available in different shapes ranging from tubes to rings, stars, and balls. Due to their small size, it is easy for anyone to scoop them up from a dish. Thus, if you want to eat with a spoon, then these type of pastas you should look for. Such short pasta types can also be part of your soups. Moreover, these can be part of pasta salad and also hold well if refrigerated. If you are using them in a salad, make sure the vegetables are diced to have the same shape as that of the pasta you are using.
Tips About Pasta Shapes
Normally, there should be different types of pastas in your pantry so that you have choices available for different recipes. Common shapes to keep in the pantry include the short, long, and some type of fun pasta shape. While purchasing pasta look for a type that has been extruded with the help of bronze die and also check whether the pasta has a floury surface. If the pasta has been extruded using bronze die then it tends to release more amount of starch and allows the sauce to combine properly with it.
To conclude, we can say that there are various pasta shapes that you must explore and try them out in your recipes. You will definitely find some shapes that you will start liking and they will become part of your different recipes.