Monday, January 3, 2011

Use Your Noodle

Magnet # 433:  Italian Spaghetti Package

Material:  Plastic, Pasta

Purchased By:  Mom & Dad

It's time to start hauling out your strainers and pasta stirrers, because tomorrow is National Spaghetti Day!  I'm not sure how this one came to be, but I'm sure it's the work of a genius.  Yep, in case you can't tell, I love pasta, particularly spaghetti, and I will absolutely be making this most of this occasion.  And whether you dine out or prepare your own dish at home, you should definitely consider joining in on the fun yourself.

While no one can say for certain where pasta, and later spaghetti itself, were first created, China may very well be its place of origin.  We do know that they were eating noodles made from millet there as far back as 2000 BC.  And it's know believed that Marco Polo wasn't responsible for importing the dish to Italy after his travels in the East, as is often believed.  Some even think that the Italians may have developed pasta on their own, or perhaps had some help from the Arabs or the Greeks in creating it.  Still, pasta has come to define Italian cuisine more than any other, and the Italians have made variations on it that no one else can match.  And, yes, Italians consume more pasta than any other people in the world nowadays, China included.  There's also a belief that spaghetti was created in that nation, specifically in Sicily.  The island's residents may have been the first to shape pasta into the long strands that are still so popular.  It was made from hard wheat and known as vermicelli, but it was likely spaghetti's forerunner.  It's amazing that this particular dish has been so beloved by such diverse cultures since ancient times, and shows no signs of ever losing its popularity.

No, I didn't just grab a bag of spaghetti from my cabinet and take a photo - believe it or not, this is really a magnet.  My folks were able to pick it up in Italy, and they told me there was a pretty large selection of pasta varieties to choose from.  I'm pretty sure they got this because they know just what a huge fan of spaghetti, and pasta in general, I am.  In fact, I may very well eat more pasta than any other kind of food.  I think there are some weeks that I have pasta just about every day.  I always have at least one package of thin spaghetti in my cupboard, so whenever I don't know what to eat, I often cook some up.  Not only does it taste good, it;s also incredibly simple to prepare - just boil, drain, and you're done.  I also really like to eat spaghetti - it's so much fun wrapping long tendrils of it around my fork.  And sure, I might top it off with the more traditional tomato sauce, meatballs, and Parmesan cheese, but I can also get creative with the items I add to my spaghetti.  I really like adding artichoke hearts, black olives, Parmesan cheese, and pine nuts for a tasty dish.  Or I might toss in salsa, black olives, black beans, corn, and sharp cheddar cheese for a Mexican style spaghetti.  And recently, I've found a Thai Peanut sauce at Target that's from their store brand, Archer Farms that is great to use on spaghetti - you can even add meatballs.  Of course, pesto sauce is always another great option, or even a can of chunky clam chowder.  Really, pasta is one of the most versatile foods out there, and there's almost no limit to what you can add to it.  So consider trying spaghetti in a whole new way tomorrow in honor of National Spaghetti Day.  Even if nothing I've mentioned here appeals to you, just consider some of your favorite ingredients and how well they might go with spaghetti.  And even though I haven't decided yet just what I'll be piling on top of my spaghetti, rest assured I will be chowing down on some.  I'll take any excuse to dig into a big bowl of pasta, and I'm not about to let this one pass me by!


  1. I love spaghetti also and will definately enjoy some tonight!

  2. I'm glad I could pass on the word!