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How To: Cook Gluten-Free Pasta

POSTED July 1, 2016

Go big with a large saucepot. Cook your pasta in about five to six quarts of water. The more water, the less of a chance your pasta will get sticky and overly “starchy.”

Salty water is a must. Italians have a saying: Cook your pasta in water “as salty as the sea.” We suggest 1/4 cup of salt per pound of pasta.

It’s all about the boil. Be sure your water is at a rolling boil before adding the pasta. Keep your stock pot covered until boiling, remove lid, add pasta, then replace lid until water reaches a rolling boil again. Only then can you keep the pot uncovered.

Stir the pasta well. As soon as your pasta hits that salty water, stir! Cover and return the lid. (See previous tip.) Once the water is back to a rolling boil, be sure to stir again. You can ease up on the stirring once the pasta has stopped settling so much at the bottom.

Don’t rely on cook times solely. While cook times are helpful, ovens and equipment are different from kitchen to kitchen. After about 9-10 minutes, check your pasta. Take a bite. The desired texture is al dente, cooked all the way through, but still firm.

Be wary of overcooking. If overcooked, gluten-free pasta becomes mushy and too sticky. Continually check the pasta for doneness. And remember: pasta will continue to cook even after it is drained. So be sure to have your sauce ready.

Drain, not rinse! Rinsing pasta takes away the starches that help the sauce to hug each noodle. Simply combine it with your hot sauce once drained.

Don’t cook for leftovers. You can try adding hot water to the noodles to revive. Some people have success reheating in the microwave covered with a wet paper towel. But typically gluten-free pasta doesn’t reheat well. 

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