Pasta is a popular cuisine in the world with a history spanning several hundreds of years. It is a very interesting meal. Pasta originated from Italy. Pasta comes in different shapes, sizes, and colors. Can you imagine that there are more than 600 different pasta shapes? Commonly used pastas are spaghetti, macaroni, noodles, lasagna, bucatini, rotini among other pastas.
You can prepare pasta in different ways with sauces, creams, soups and make interesting delicious dishes with it. There are so many recipes to suit many tastes and fit any occasion. Meat lovers and non-meat lovers can enjoy this dish.
You can prepare pasta with chicken, meat, eggs, beans, lentils, mushroom, cheese, various vegetables among other recipes. You can use pepper and other spices and make it hot.
Pasta is a favorite dish worldwide because of its taste and how easy it is to prepare it. If you are looking to prepare a quick meal, look no further than pasta. To prepare pasta, simply put in a pot of boiling water, add salt and cook it. It takes about 15 minutes to get it ready. Should you choose to prepare lasagna, then you will use an oven. Pasta can be served in a variety of ways depending on your tastes and preferences.
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Does Pasta Go Bad?
Pasta is very delicious.
Pasta is made from two main ingredients, water, semolina flour, coloring agents, preservatives and flavoring agents for some brands of pasta. The semolina flour is mixed with water and the dough is shaped, dried and packaged. The dough is shaped in very many different shapes and styles. Semolina flour for making pasta is made from durum wheat. Semolina flour has a low starch content and a high protein content and is easy to digest.
Most manufacturing companies adhere to strict quality controls during the manufacturing process of pasta. The semolina flour is inspected for quality, water also has to adhere to some standards and all the ingredients involved. In addition, the manufacturing, drying and packaging process is monitored to ensure the highest quality standards. The mixing machines are kept in high standards of hygiene. This standards ensures that when you get your dried pasta at your local store, it is a quality product with a long shelf life.
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Does pasta expire?
Whether Pasta expires or not is an old age question. There are two types of pasta, fresh or dried pasta. The good thing about pasta is that it is easy to preserve it and use it for a long time but eventually both fresh and dried pasta get expired.
How to Store dry pasta
How long pasta lasts depends on the manufacture date and how it is stored. Dried pasta has a shelf life of up to 3years. Usually, dried pasta has a long shelf life and can outlast the expiry date indicated on the packaging by one or two years. You can check the expiry date of your spaghetti on the packaging.
Store dried pasta in a dry, dark and cool area. Do not open the packaging unless you need to cook it because dried pasta is best stored in its packaging. Your kitchen cabinet, pantry or cupboard is recommended. Keep the pasta away from elements such as oxygen, water, moisture, and heat.
Once a package of pasta is open, the shelf life reduces. Therefore, it is better to buy smaller packages that you can use at once especially if you don’t make pasta weekly in your home. If you have to store an open bag of pasta for a longer period exceeding three weeks, then put the pasta in an airtight bag or container and seal it tightly. An opened bag of pasta will start losing its quality after about three weeks, therefore, try to use it within this period.
When pasta is exposed to heat, water, moisture or oxygen, it becomes moldy and gets spoilt therefore if you don’t store your dried pasta well, it may get spoilt even before the expiry date.
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Storing fresh pasta
It is important to note that fresh pasta does not have a long shelf life like dried pasta. Unlike dry pasta which preservatives and is made from mainly two ingredients, water and semolina, fresh pasta has an added ingredient, eggs. Because of the eggs, and also because it is not dry, but fresh the shelf life of fresh pasta is very short.
Therefore try to buy fresh pasta only when you are going to cook it because fresh pasta should be used within the shortest period of time. However, if stored well, fresh past can last 4- 5 days after the expiry date indicated on the package. For best flavors and taste, however, use freshly prepared pasta immediately. unfortunately, this may not always be possible.
Remember that storing fresh pasta is different from storing dried pasta. Freshly made pasta must be stored in the refrigerator or freezer. Place the pasta in a freezer safe container or bag and store it. In the refrigerator, the pasta will last one to two weeks only before going bad.
For a longer shelf life, consider freezing the fresh pasta. When frozen, fresh pasta can stretch its lifespan to a month or two. But the taste will slightly differ from the original taste. Once a bag of preserved fresh pasta is opened, use it within 5 days but ensure it is kept well in the refrigerator.
How to tell if your Pasta has gone bad
It is quite easy to detect fresh pasta that is expired from its smell. Expired fresh pasta will have an off and odd smell.
On the other hand, it is not so easy to know if dried pasta has gone bad apart from the expiry date on the package guiding you. For dried pasta, check the bag of pasta for bugs, discoloration or mold. But remember that the appearance of expired pasta does not change much. And just in case you get to cook expired dried pasta, it will have a stale taste and you will not want to eat it, it won’t be the delicious pasta that you know.
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How do you handle pasta leftovers?
It is preferable to make just enough pasta for one meal. But sometimes it is inevitable that some dish will be left over after a meal. As for pasta, place the leftovers in the freezer to preserve it for long. The leftovers should be able to last for between one to two months, if not consumed within a few days. For best results, use an airtight container or bag. Leaving the pasta in the freezer for a long time will affect its flavor and it won’t taste as delicious as the original dish. If you have a plan to eat residues within days of being stored, then store in a refrigerator in an airtight container or bag and consume within five days. If you don’t consume within five days, you will need to dispose of it. Already cooked pasta gets mushy and clingy. Store it with sauce or sprinkle a little oil to prevent it from clinging together.
When buying pasta, always check the expiry date. Even though dried pasta lasts a long time on the shelf but eventually it expires. A good rule to guide you is to keep pasta for a maximum of two years after buying it. If it goes beyond this date, it will be too dry and it will have a dead flavor if cooked.
Please, remember that tomorrow is another day for making pasta. Fresh pasta is best prepared and consumed fresh. If you are making fresh pasta, why not make enough to last you a month or two utmost instead of making too much and risking it going bad. Then when you finish it, you can always make some more.