October is National Pasta Month and October 25th is World Pasta Day. What better time to give this healthy and delicious food the attention is deserves?
A healthy pasta meal is truly the sum of its parts, and features two key factors: what you pair with your pasta, and how much pasta you eat in a meal. Pasta is an ideal partner for healthy foods and ingredients such as vegetables, beans, and herbs (whole or pureed in sauce) and extra virgin olive oil. Nuts, fish, and small amounts of meat or cheese can also be added for extra flavor and protein. Pasta's versatility allows for almost endless preparations. Healthy pasta meals are a balance of pleasure and health and enjoyed worldwide!
So as you think of the ways you will celebrate this special food and before we dive into many of the delicious ways you can prepare pasta we will dish up some fun facts to wet your appetite!
- According to a 2011 Survey by Oxfam the world’s favorite food is pasta!
- There are more than 600 different pasta shapes made around the world!
- The most popular pasta shapes eaten in the United Sates are spaghetti, thin spaghetti, and elbows.
- A healthy serving of pasta for an adult is one-half to two-thirds cup of cooked pasta.
- The first known pasta recipe was documented in approximately the year 1000! The recipe appeared in the book De Arte Coquinaria per Vermicelli e Maccaroni Siciliana (The Art of Cooking Sicilian Macaroni and Vermicelli) and was written by Martino Corno, chef to the powerful Patriarch of Aquileia.
- If Italians ate their average yearly amount of pasta in spaghetti they would eat enough pasta to wind around the earth 15,000 times!
- The literal translation for “al dente” is “to the tooth.” Looking for some pasta cooking tips? Here is a great article.
- The United States is the second largest pasta producing nation, totaling 2 million tons every year.
And without further adieu here are Oldways 12 great ways to prepare pasta!