Celebrate National Pasta Day

Tomato sauce with onion and butter 

Today is National Pasta Day in the US. The "official" Pasta Day website contains several interesting facts about our favorite carbohydrate. Although Marco Polo has long been credited with "discovering" pasta in Asia and bringing it back to his native Italy, documents describing what appears to be pasta have been found that pre-date Marco's travels to the Far East.

In the early days of the United States, pasta wasn't very popular, although Thomas Jefferson did bring the first known pasta machine to the States in 1789 after learning about pasta in Naples, Italy. It took another century for pasta to become popular, coinciding with a wave of Italian immigrants in the later part of the 19th century.

Our Members are much more likely to celebrate today's 'holiday' by making pasta at home than taking advantage of Olive Garden's bottomless pasta bowls. If gnocchi is your go-to pasta, Epicurious recently published a tip for easy weeknight gnocchi. Instead of rolling and cutting the dough, they suggest putting it in a pastry bag and piping into water, using a piece of kitchen twine tied across a stockpot to cut the gnocchi into individual dumplings.

Here are a few favorite recipes from the EYB Library to get you started on your Pasta Day celebrations:

Linguine with shrimp scampi from Barefoot Contessa Family Style by  Ina Garten
Broccoli orecchiette from Jamie's 30-Minute Meals by Jamie Oliver
Mushroom risoniotto from River Cottage Veg by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall
Tomato sauce with onion and butter from Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking by Marcella Hazan
Soba noodles with aubergine and mango from Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi 

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