Pasta Cooking Lessons at Eataly

Yesterday, I went to a cooking demo at Eataly by Gennaro Esposito and Michael White. These demos showcased 12 Italian and American chefs who cook Italian cuisine.  Michael White is one of my favorite chefs in New York and his restaurant Marea (read post here) is my favorite restaurant right now.  The cooking demo was about how to cook the perfect pasta dish, which you would think is the simplest thing to make but the simplest things can be the most difficult.  The chefs reiterated that Italians don’t use many ingredients in a dish so each ingredient’s freshness and quality is that much more important.  These are the 5 things I learned from the demo:

1) There’s only raw and al dente pasta nothing in between.

2) Finish cooking the pasta in the sauce (about 2 minutes before al dente).

3) You have to be conscious of the kind of pasta you use with the sauce you’re making. For example, a chunky sauce would be better with a penne so the sauce holds in the hole whereas a simple tomato sauce is best with spaghetti.

4) Always salt the water before the pasta goes in and depending on the sauce you are making, the salt should be 7 % – 10 % of the water.

5) If you’re using dry pasta, buy pasta that is similar in color to semolina not the dark kind.

{Garganelli with Cream of Grana Padano, Prosciutto de Parma, & Radicchio}

{Spaghetti Pomodoro}

{The most amazing seafood risotto}

{Gennaro teaching us about pasta}

{Two glasses of wine at lunch, I feel like an Italian now!}

The Event: Identita New York