A good pasta dish is absolute heaven. It’s one of the best comfort foods out there, and it’s super easy to make. We know you have your favourite pasta recipes, but there are ways and hacks to make it even better. Trust us, you will feel like an Italian chef after trying these. Here are a few tips and tricks to ace that pasta dish every single time and feel like an absolute pro in the kitchen.
1. Cook everything you’re putting in your pasta in one pot
This is one of the basics of cooking amazing pasta. Everything needs to be cooked in one pot to make sure all the flavours assimilate well. And it makes your life easier. This includes boiling your pasta as well. Boil it, keep it aside, cook everything one by one in the same pot, and add the pasta back into it. Use this hack for all kinds of pasta recipes, no matter what the ingredients.
2. Use those spices!
If you’re making a meaty pasta, use spicy, extra flavourful meats, and cook them first. My personal favourites are pork chorizo, pepperoni, and smoked chicken. Mushrooms and bell peppers go beautifully with any of these meats. If you’re putting only vegetables, make sure to season them beforehand so that the spices really get into the vegetables. Cook on low heat so that the flavours have time to come together.
3. Use olive oil… and lots of garlic
Before adding any of your other ingredients, saute garlic in olive oil to flavour it. Chop up one clove of garlic roughly and toss it into hot oil. Add a little butter to it. Take the garlic out when it’s brown and crispy, and add it to the pasta as garnish later. While you’re at it, caramelise some onions and put them aside for garnishing. Keep some of the flavoured oil aside as well to drizzle on the pasta later.
4. Salt the water in which you’re boiling the pasta
This is super important because salting your pasta water will make your life so much easier. Firstly, the pasta cooks faster and is easier to work with. Secondly, this ensures that your pasta water also has some flavour and doesn’t go to waste because…
5. Pasta water is great for your homemade pasta sauce
Yes, you can make your own pasta sauce at home. And it’s not difficult at all. Roast about 3-4 red bell peppers. When they’re done, keep them aside to cool. Chop up some tomatoes roughly and put them in a blender. Add your choice of herbs and a healthy dose of garlic. Put the roasted bell peppers into the blender as well and zap it up! Cook this sauce for a few minutes after the meats and/or vegetables have been done. It will start thickening at this point, so add the pasta water to bring it to your desired consistency. The texture will be next level!
Don’t serve immediately after cooking. Let it sit in the pot for at least 15-20 minutes after cooking for the pasta to absorb all the flavours well. And make sure there’s extra, because it’s going to taste even better the next day.