Pasta is a generic term for noodles of various lengths, widths and shapes, either accompanied by a sauce or filled with other ingredients. It’s not as common in grocery stores, but it’s a unique shape. In Emilia-Romagna it can be found stuffed with pumpkin or with ricotta and a butter sauce. It has a tighter spiral than fusilli. You first met elbow macaroni noodles when you were crafting in kindergarten. It’s one noodle twisted to look that way. Cavatappi is a type of macaroni, known for its hollow, corkscrew shape. Search for a topic, destination or article, We use cookies to understand how you use our site and to improve your experience. It gets the name from candele, or “candle.” Legend holds that Catholic religious ceremonies inspired the shape of candele. Lorighittas originated in the town of Morgongiori and are rare outside the town. Long pasta can be hand-rolled or made with an extruder, but many types of short pasta (not all) have to be made with an extruder to create their unique shapes. Not as easy as I thought, but well worth the effort. Regardless of shape, it’s an irreplaceable component of Italian cuisine. Coincidentally, my two favorite foods are pasta and croissants and creamy custards and sauces. Or it could simply have picked up the name because the shape simply resembles a clerical collar. Give it a twist by making pesto shrimp spaghetti. Alternatively, it’s sometimes made with just flour and water. It likely originated in Genoa and Naples. Pasta ending in ‘ini’ is a smaller version of a particular shape, and pasta ending in ‘oni’ is a larger version of a particular shape. It’s also cylinder-shaped with ridges in its texture. Longer pasta shapes, like spaghetti, appeared early on too, simply because they were easy to make by hand and were easy to dry. This southern Italian pasta has an elongated shape with an opening in the middle. These long, flat, and slightly narrow noodles come from Emilia-Romagna and Marche. These ridged shells are often called “little Sardinian gnocchi.” It’s so popular in Sardinia that it’s sometimes considered the island’s signature dish. The south was generally poorer, so they couldn’t afford the egg. Another story goes that priests would often stop by the homes of locals for dinner but overstay their welcomes. The name of this pasta means “crest of a rooster” or “coxcomb.” The curved, c-shaped tube has a ruffled edge that perfectly captures pasta sauce. The short tube shape of Cannolicchi captures sauce and is usually served alongside seafood like clams or mussels. This curved tube of pasta is similar to macaroni. Know your gigli from your trofie with help from our guide to local pasta variations. While it’s a diverse type of pasta that works well with most recipes, cream sauces love to cling to it. Subscription offer: save 44% and receive a brand-new cookbook. “Generally in the north, pasta is made fresh,” explains Segan. The long, thin noodles are similar to angel hair pasta and have a practical purpose, too. Note that in Italian pasta is also the generic term for any kind of dough (bread, pizza), but it is usually made clear from the context what type of pasta one is referring to. Dried, store-bought pasta from the box is best eaten within a year. Busa can be found primarily in Trapani, a region in western Sicily. Italy is home to thousands of types of pasta, from well-known quills and tubes, to unusual shapes handmade from region to region. This popular pasta is sometimes nicknamed butterfly or bow-tie pasta. It starts as a sheet pasta that’s rolled into tubes. Trottole comes from Campania. Alternatively, you can freeze it for up to two weeks. Thank you for always supporting me, you’ve become quite the cook Judy! These long, flat noodles have ruffled edges that look similar to curly hair. One of the most popular ways to serve orecchiette is with broccoli rabe and sausage. Gemelli means “twins” in Italian, though just one strand of pasta is used to make it. Of course, it’s used to make lasagne, layered between ricotta cheese and meat sauce in a traditional recipe (vegan versions are popping up everywhere). You can drench tortellini in sauces or serve it in a brothy or tomato soup. The one type of pasta you need to know in this category is, drum roll please…. It looks a lot like traditional spaghetti. Fusilli or rotini.