by Rachel Perlow
The Fasta Pasta microwave macaroni cooker.
We first saw the Fasta Pasta on the TV in December. It wasn’t actually an ad or infomercial, it was on a local news product review segment. They started by saying another fast pasta cooker product (the one that you just pour boiling water over the pasta) didn’t work in their previous segment. It just made mushy but still uncooked noodles, like they had just been re-hydrated. So, they were skeptical about the Fasta Pasta — as were we. They followed the instructions and lo and behold it worked! Still incredulous, we contacted the manufacturer and they were kind enough to send us one to review. And, guess what? It works!
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We’ve tried it with whole wheat rotini and linguini and they cook perfectly. For the rotini, you need to stop the microwave and stir about half way in; for the linguini that’s not necessary. But that’s it. No stirring or watching for the pot to boil over.
The Fasta Pasta is a time and energy saver. And not just the energy used in the cooking process, but in your energy of not having to clean up extra kitchen equipment. Let me explain. You’ve saved time because you’re not waiting for a pot of water to boil. You’ve saved energy, because you’re not bringing a pot of water to boil then having it on while pasta is cooking (but I don’t have the actual energy consumption numbers for using the microwave for 10-15 minutes, versus having a gas or electric stove on for 20-25 minutes), AND you don’t have to then clean the pasta cooking pot and strainer. Just pop the Fasta Pasta and lid in the top shelf of your dishwasher or easily hand clean, that’s still easier than hand cleaning a large pot & strainer.
Here’s a step by step guide to using the Fasta Pasta:
First, you measure out your pasta and put it into the Fasta Pasta.
Then, you fill the water up to the appropriate mark on the side of the container.
Add a little salt, if you like.
Place in microwave (uncovered) and cook for the length of time indicated on the instructions.
A handy reference sheet for determining cooking times is included.
Remove Fasta Pasta from microwave, place on strainer lid and strain. Make sure you do NOT cook your pasta in the Fasta Pasta with the lid on!
While the pasta is cooking in the microwave, put your sauce together. I suggest having your mise en place prepared, because if you wait to cut your ingredients until the pasta is cooking, it will be done before the sauce!
Ingredients for a Primavera
Saute your veggies.
Pre-cooked shrimp from COSTCO.
I like to cook the pasta for a minute less than the instructions call for. Finish cooking it in the pan with your sauce. Save some of the pasta cooking water when you strain it (which is way easier to do with the Fasta Pasta than with a conventional strainer), in case you need to thin your sauce.
Toss it all together.