NBC News (NBC) - October 17 is National Pasta Day. How will you celebrate?
Did you know that pasta is a type of noodle of traditional Italian cuisine, with the first reference dating to 1154 in Sicily and first attested in English in 1874?
Typically, it is made from unleavened dough of durum wheat flour that is mixed with water or eggs and formed into sheets or various shapes. It can then be served fresh or dried to be stored for later use.
The versatility of pasta lends it to sweet and savory dishes. It can be featured as the main dish, a light, fresh side or even the anticipated rich finish as the dessert.
Fresh pasta was originally produced by hand but, today, many varieties of fresh pasta are commercially produced by large scale machines and the products are widely available in supermarkets.
Dried and fresh pasta come in a number of shapes and varieties.
There are 310 specific forms known variably by over 1300 names having been recently documented.
Now that you know all about pasta - cook up a bowl and dig in.