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Old 05-19-2016, 05:57 PM   #1
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Pasta-Ziti, not overcooked in slow cooker

I saw something interesting on America's test kitchen or Cook's Country.

Basically, she cooked italian sausage w/water then down to just grease and browning. Then she added ziti. This is where it was interesting. She sauteed the dry ziti for 4 minutes in the italians and grease. She said it was to 'set the protein', something about the starch attaches to the protein and by doing this sauteing, the ziti wouldn't be overcooked in a slow cooker for 3 hours. Then added tomatoes and whatnot and cooked it for 3 hours. The ziti was not overcooked.

How many times have I heard to not cook pasta in a slow cooker, and how many times the question comes up about not putting pasta in pressure canned soups/stews? A million times?

So it's left me wondering, how the science of 'setting the protein' in pasta works, if it really doesn't get over cooked and if it could be used to put a small amount of pasta in pressure canned soups/stews without the problem of over-sogged pasta. Anyone want to talk about it?

Is this why it says to saute the rice and pasta in RiceARoni the san francisco treat? Is this how the pasta is made in the canning industry, so that it doesn't get over-sogged in canned soups?

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Old 05-19-2016, 06:05 PM   #2
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Hm. Interesting concept, Blissful. I'm curious too.

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Old 05-19-2016, 06:17 PM   #3
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It's certainly something to think about. I'll see if I can find it on the Cooks Illustrated site.

It's my understanding that the problem with putting pasta and other refined carbs into home-canned goods is that the starch can interfere with the heat getting to the center of the jar. I don't know how commercial canning overcomes that.
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canning, cook, other, overcooked, pasta, preservation, slow cooker

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