I need a pasta guide!

Yes, a pasta guide! A nice visual reference as to what the pasta looks like and what it’s name is!

I sent Mrs. Mercotan out for a particular pasta for which I have a hankering. Long, spaghetti-like thin strands, but with 4 or 5 ridges on them the entire length, the better to hold the sauce. I thought it was rigatoni. It’s not.

My attempts to find a decent guide have not been fruitful. Can any of my fellow dopers link me to such a thing? So I can easily differentiate rigatoni from capellini, ziti, linguine, vermicelli, mostaciolli, and so forth?

There’s a LOT of pasta guides out there, but my favorite is Nika Hazleton’s Pasta Cookbook.

Lots of recipes of course, but in the front of the book there are pictures and lists of many pasta shapes. Also has info on pasta itself, both Western and Oriental, health information, how to make you own pasta, and how to select pasta making equipment.

Not sure about it’s print status, but IMHO, it’s one of the best.

Thanks, Baker, but I was hoping for a nice on-line guide. If none turns up, I’ll visit my local book store.

Are you looking for Fusilli lunghi? Try this link.

Pasta.com has a bunch of pastas available (looks like over 40). Maybe that would help ya out.

This looks pretty complete


This may be your stuff.

Well, it’s not fusilli. It may be bigoli, but I can’t find an illustration of the stuff close-up. And the name isn’t familiar. Pasta.com is sadly incomplete in it’s listings.

Why, oh why must I suffer so?

Thanks for trying! That bucatini looks pretty good.

Well, a little search says that bucatini is also known as perciatelli. That name seems more familiar to me. It’s spaghetti like and it has a tiny hole through it.

I haven’t found a picture of it yet but my computer is rather slow, maybe you’d have better luck.

Barilla has put out a ‘spagetti rigati’. It’s like regular spaghetti but cooks faster because of the grooves cut down the length of it.

Rigatoni, Ziti, and Penne are tube shaped pastas, cut at different angles and some have grooves the length of them. Good for holding sauces.

Vermicelli, Angel Hair are very thin versions of spaghetti, not my favorites at all. Not good for much as I see it.

Fettuccini is a flattened spaghetti, good with cream sauces.

I found a professional pasta guide online.

catnoe, you found it! Spaghetti Rigati was it! That’s why I was thinking rigatoni! Thank you!

Sadly, your link isn’t too functional for me, Wile E. Most of the photos won’t open.

Thanks, all.

Spaghetti Rigati! Spaghetti Rigati! The better to hold QtM’s primo pasta sauce close unto itself!

Its my favorite for, I think, two reasons.

The first is that it holds a lot of sauce.
The second is because all those little strands feel so fun when each ‘bursts’ as I bite them.

It also cooks quickly.

Some of the Barilla names are unfamiliar to me. I like their bavette and particularly their mafaldine. Since I would have called the latter “curled pappardelle” I found this to tell me the difference.

I recommend the mafaldine. The edges hold globs of sauce well, the middle gets coated with specks of sauce and the breadth wraps well around lumps of meat in your ragu - or meatballs or bits of sausage or whatever.