Spaghetti, fettuccine, ziti, ravioli…you know the common pasta types. But are you familiar with some of the other dozens of options and their shapes and names?
Long, short and stuffed are the basic categories of pasta. For example, spaghetti is a long pasta, ziti is a short pasta and ravioli is a stuffed pasta. The world of pasta goes far beyond these types, however.
You’ve probably seen tagliatelle on our menu – and likely even tried it. Maybe you’ve even wondered what makes it different from fettuccine and other wider, long pastas like fettuccine. Tagliatelle is wider than fettuccine, but is a bit thinner. Apart from the size, the ingredients also differ – tagliatelle is made with egg, contributing to its popularity for being served as a fresh pasta. Fettuccine, on the other hand, often doesn’t include egg and is easy to find as a dried pasta at stores.
At Bruno’s, you can enjoy Tagliatelle Bolognese, which is our spinach tagliatelle served in a thick and flavorful pork, beef and veal sauce.
Wheels, Bowties & Shells
The English names for wheels, bowties and shells are all commonly used – but do you know the Italian names for these pasta shapes?
If you see rotelle on a menu or a box at the grocery store, that’s the name for the wheel-shaped pasta. Farfalle, which actually translates to butterfly, is the Italian word for what we often call bowtie pasta. The Italian name for shell pasta varies depending on the size of shell you’re referring to; the smallest shell shape is conchigliette and the largest is conchiglioni. The word conchiglie just refers to shell-shaped pasta in general.
These types of pasta are frequently used in pasta salads, or in casserole-like pasta dishes such as macaroni and cheese. The cheese, vegetables and dressings stick well to the nooks and crannies of the pasta shapes, making them a good and delicious choice for these types of recipes.
Many of the smaller types of pasta are used in soups, or as a heavier addition to vegetable salads. Ditalini is a very short tube-shaped pasta that is used in dishes like pasta fagioli or minestrone. Orzo looks like large grains of rice and is delicious cold in salads or as the pasta addition to chicken soup. One of the smallest pasta shapes is called acini di pepe, which translates to peppercorn. It’s used similarly to orzo in soups and salads, though it’s much smaller and is round, differing from orzo’s more elongated shape.
We hope to see you soon at Bruno’s for a delicious meal, whether you prefer long, short or stuffed pasta. If you’d like to take a look at our full menu, you can do so here.
If you have any questions about our menu or schedule, please feel free to contact us at (207) 878-9511.