You’re going to love this.
When the folks at Bialetti reached out to ask if they could send me their Pasta Pot to review, I said yes right away.
Why, you may ask?
Because of all the tools, gadgets and utensils in my kitchen (and there are MANY, as you can imagine), one item that I would say gets little to no thought is my pasta pot.
I mean, I grab a pot based on the amount of pasta I’m making (typically a 4 – 8 quart size), fill it with water, and heat it up. I grab a colander for draining, and done. This “system” has worked for me for the more than 30 years that I’ve been cooking, and I never thought about how it could be better.
Till now. Guys – I LOVE this pot, and for so many reasons.
First of all, I love the look of it – I’m lucky to have a very spacious kitchen now, with room for all my pots, pans and equipment. But when I had a tiny kitchen, items like large pots (especially ones that I used frequently) had to live on my stove top. And I only wish they were as attractive as this one (check out all the colors on the Bialetti web site!).
But let’s get down to business – yes, looks are important, but what would make this worthy of a spot in my kitchen, no matter the size?
First, check out the shape – it’s oval, not round, so it holds long noodles like spaghetti and lasagna without breakage.
And the handles? They’re designed to stay cool. And they do. Such a small detail, but if you’ve ever touched the handle of a hot pot, you’ll appreciate it.
The interior is non-stick, so if – like me – you often return drained pasta to the pot and add things like cheese, sauce and meat, you will LOVE how easy this pot is to clean up (and yes, it’s dishwasher safe too).
But my most favorite feature? The perforated lid, which locks onto the pot for easy draining. This eliminates the need for a separate colander or strainer, and let’s you keep the pasta right in the pot – no transferring back and forth.
I took the opportunity of giving this pot a test run, to make one of my standby weeknight meals – “pantry” pasta.
“Pantry” pasta is just as the name implies – a pasta dish comprised of any bits and leftovers you have lying around. The base recipe stays the same, and allows for the addition of whatever you like. In its most stripped down form it’s the perfect meal if you’re cooking for 1 or 2 – keep it simple with the butter, pepper and lots of cheese. I had some baby arugula left over from this dish, which I tossed in at the end, along with some lemon zest from a lemon that happened to be in the fridge.
But truly, no rules here. Those odds and ends of deli meats and cheeses? Half a bell pepper? A few pieces of shredded rotisserie chicken? It’s all good. And needless to say, though I used bucatini here (because I LOVE bucatini), any pasta shape will work too.
This is my go-to meal when Mike’s working late or is out-of-town, as Noah loves it with grated cheese and bacon bits, and I can add whatever I have on-hand separately.
What’s your “can’t-deal-with-cooking-tonight-but-I-have-to-cook” meal?
lightly adapted from The New York Times
12 – 16 ounces of your favorite pasta (I used bucatini)
4 tablespoons butter, divided
2 – 3 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper
1 cup (generous) grated cheese of your choice, plus additional for serving (I typically have Parmesan in the fridge but use what you like!)
a few handfuls of baby arugula
grated zest of one lemon
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook till al dente. Reserve 1 cup of water before draining.
While water is boiling, melt 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet. Add the pepper and saute for a minute or two. Add half the pasta cooking water and the remaining butter to the pan. Stir for another minute.
Add the drained pasta and the parmesan to the skillet, tossing to coat. Add the arugula and toss again. At this point you can add some more pasta cooking water if needed. Season with salt to taste and serve immediately, topped with the lemon zest and additional cheese.
This delicious recipe brought to you by Sheri Silver
Note: I was not compensated for this post. Bialetti sent me a pot in exchange for an honest review; all comments and opinions are – as always – completely my own.