Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Recommended Posts

Just purchased one of these from their website. Basically it's a food safe plastic box with a lid (which is only used for draining the pasta). It cooks the pasta in the microwave in about 10 minutes depending on quantity. This is overall much faster than the stove when you take into account the time needed to boil the water. I've used it a few times and followed their direction regarding quantities and time and been rewarded with perfect al dente pasta each time.

I got this mainly because of ease of use, no big pot of water to boil and drain.Cost was cheap and came highly recommended. Amazon reviews and ATK all were rave. Actually l couldn't find a negative review on the Web.

Does anyone else have one of these? Did you buy one and decide to put it out to pasture because it didn't live up to its promise?

Well it's not exactly a multi-tasker, their website does have many recipes including one for cake!!!, mind you from a mix,

p

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

What are the dimensions of this thing? I looked but couldn't find it. I did see a reference that it would only cook enough for 2 servings. I also found one just for making mac and cheese. Does this mean you can't cook macaroni in it? This does look somewhat interesting. I don't know why, but I have always disliked cooking pasta on the stove. By the way, it is $15 on amazon.com and about $33 on amazon.ca.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I confess to having purchased one on the recommendation of someone else on eG. I do not recall who it was but there is somewhere a topic on it. I tried it twice and was not at all happy with the result. This may be operator error and I should give it a couple more chances. I tried linguine and some strands were cooked and some not.

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

Link to post
Share on other sites

10 minutes doesn't seem particularly fast to me. The spaghetti I regularly use takes 8-9 minutes on the stove top. Add maybe two minutes to bring the water to a boil in a kettle, we are looking at a maximum of 11 mins.

 

The I also often cook capellini. It takes 3 minutes stove top, plus the same two minutes to bring water to a boil.

 

To save one minute at the cost of yet another gadget cluttering up the kitchen is not somewhere I intend to go.

 

What's the hurry?

...your dancing child with his Chinese suit.

 

The Kitchen Scale Manifesto

Link to post
Share on other sites

10 minutes doesn't seem particularly fast to me. The spaghetti I regularly use takes 8-9 minutes on the stove top. Add maybe two minutes to bring the water to a boil in a kettle, we are looking at a maximum of 11 mins.

 

The I also often cook capellini. It takes 3 minutes stove top, plus the same two minutes to bring water to a boil.

 

To save one minute at the cost of yet another gadget cluttering up the kitchen is not somewhere I intend to go.

 

What's the hurry?

Not sure that speed was part of the equation. Certainly it was not for me. Not having to deal with a large pan of the water was what pushed me in the direction of a different way of cooking pasta. Some decisions are driven by health issues as one ages and lifting pans of water becomes less and less appealing.

  • Like 3

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

Link to post
Share on other sites

http://fastapasta.com/

 

I'll try to respond to some points raised:

 

"size" - 4 servings (whatever that is?),one recipe calls for 3 cups of rotini if that helps

 

"cost" - US>cheap, Canada> not so much (difference in dollar, shipping etc)

 

"any container?" - in the cambro discussion there was mention made of the acceptable temp ranges the various types were rated at, only the polycarbonate were rated at 100C - food safe @ 100C?

 

" linguine uncooked" - I have a full power micro (1000 watts) and use the shortest time, not had that happen, I used linguine as well

 

"cook time" - takes me more than 2 minutes to boil enough water for pasta, also you have to stir the pasta now and then to prevent sticking and clumping, this doesn't

 

"efficiency" - boiling water in a kettle is the most energy efficient and fastest method but I wouldn't use a kettle to cook pasta  :smile: 

 

Full disclosure: I'm not a shill for this company and am not trying to "sell" this product but was pleasantly surprised at how well it worked for me. I was surprised that no one had commented on it before however.

 

p

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Just purchased one of these from their website. Basically it's a food safe plastic box with a lid (which is only used for draining the pasta). It cooks the pasta in the microwave in about 10 minutes depending on quantity. This is overall much faster than the stove when you take into account the time needed to boil the water. I've used it a few times and followed their direction regarding quantities and time and been rewarded with perfect al dente pasta each time.

I got this mainly because of ease of use, no big pot of water to boil and drain.Cost was cheap and came highly recommended. Amazon reviews and ATK all were rave. Actually l couldn't find a negative review on the Web.

Does anyone else have one of these? Did you buy one and decide to put it out to pasture because it didn't live up to its promise?

Well it's not exactly a multi-tasker, their website does have many recipes including one for cake!!!, mind you from a mix,

p

I have one - the Addies Kitchen Microwave Oven Pasta Boat - a friend talked me into getting one and trying it - I am glad I did.  I find it works nicely for some of the pasta items that break up easily in boiling water on the stove top.  In particular, my homemade ravioli, tortellini, etc.

In fact, I have a routine for "quick" mac and cheese that I am very happy with because there is no oven use and it has been hot here.

I cook most dry pasta somewhat longer than the directions because the appliance I use the most is a 900W .

 

For elbow or small shells, I cook them for 18 minutes, remove, drain, toss in some butter, some grated cheese - about 1 1/2 cups, loosly packed for 3 cups of cooked pasta (combo of cheddar, jack and queso asadero (from the Mexican market), seasonings and stir THEN I add the "secret" ingredient, about half a cup of heavy cream, stir and put back in the microwave for 2-3 minutes, stir some more.

Sometimes I add a bit more grated cheese on top and run it through another 2-3 minutes in the MW.

If you like, you can (as I often do) top this with toasted, buttered panko crumbs.

 

I tried another but was not happy with the way the lid fitted.  With the Addies, the lid with the perforations slides on and then the back half folds down and locks the lid on, (the other one twice had the lid pop off and my pasta went down the sink). 

After draining, pop the back half up, slide the other end off and there you are.

 

For me also the "problem" with stove top pasta in boiling water is that I don't have the strength to lift as much, the grip in my right hand is "iffy" and I am a bit shaky now.

I have an 8 quart pot with the perforated liner but lifting that out of the boiling water has been tricky without having some of the boiling water hit ME!

 

The one I got has removable handles but I leave them on and use hot pads or more often, my grippy gloves to move the pasta boat out of the microwave and apply the lid and drain.

 

I make a lot of homemade pasta - flat noodles and such, which cook very quickly and which tend to cling together in a pot of boiling water and fall apart if STIRRED. 

With the microwave cooking, it doesn't matter if they cling together, they cook fairly evenly in less than 5 minutes - depends on the thickness - and as they go right into the soup, stew or other dish, they separate on their own.

 

I like it so well I have purchased a second as a "back-up" because invariably, when I find something I really like, it is discontinued.  And that is frustrating.  I'm still a bit miffed that the "Equal Measure Measuring Cup" was discontinued and when I broke mine I could not get a replacement. 

Edited by andiesenji (log)
  • Like 1

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

http://fastapasta.com/

 

 

 

"efficiency" - boiling water in a kettle is the most energy efficient and fastest method but I wouldn't use a kettle to cook pasta  :smile: 

 

 

I don't cook the pasta in the kettle!

 

I note that the website claims to be able to cook pasta in 15 minutes. So can I. On the stove top. 

 

 

Not sure that speed was part of the equation. Certainly it was not for me. Not having to deal with a large pan of the water was what pushed me in the direction of a different way of cooking pasta. Some decisions are driven by health issues as one ages and lifting pans of water becomes less and less appealing.

 

Fair point Anna. 

However the company's marketing,from its name to its website, is all about some perceived speed advantage. It is no faster.

 

Anyway, I don't have or want a microwave, so I still won't be going there.

Edited by liuzhou (log)

...your dancing child with his Chinese suit.

 

The Kitchen Scale Manifesto

Link to post
Share on other sites

This device does violate the traditional teaching that you need a large volume of water to make pasta.

 

I don't believe it (and neither does H. McGee FWIW).

 

But if its ok to microwave pasta in a little water, you might as well boil in a small volume on the stove.

Link to post
Share on other sites

And when the water is boiling, it will be 212F. As far as the pasta is concerned, it has no way of knowing what is heating the water. It can be microwave, coal, gas, charcoal, solar energy, atomic energy -------------------. The pasta will be cooked at the exact same time.

 

dcarch

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Don't see getting one of these anytime soon myself, but plan to put in my suggestions file for folks who might have a use.  A few clarifications would be helpful, palo and andie.  How much can they cook at a time?  I'm guessing half a pound, but that's just a hunch.  Relatedly, how much water does it take to cook that amount of pasta?  Third, are you adding salt and, if so, when?

Link to post
Share on other sites

I add salt to the water when I pour it over the pasta.  I can cook enough for 4 generous servings of pasta, the same amount I would cook on the stove top,  with adding the other ingredients after it is drained and dumped into a bowl. 

I put in the pasta and fill the container to the maximum line with cold water.  I don't see any point in using less.  Mine holds 8-9 cups of water with over an inch of head space.  Has not yet boiled over.

 

I usually prepare enough for a meal plus and figure on leftovers for a second meal or the basis of a totally different dish - pasta salad, for instance.

 

I do not care about the time - I'm not looking for speed, I am looking for ease of handling - for me - because I am elderly and infirm.  Ten years ago I would have laughed but not now.  I need this - and so will everyone someday. 

 

As I said in my earlier post, this is ideal for cooking stuffed pastas that break apart in rapidly boiling water or if you have to stir to separate them. 

For me, this alone would make this worthwhile because I cook a lot of ravioli, much is homemade and delicate. 

 

I've been experimenting with some of the gluten-free pastas and this method also works well with them - they may need longer cooking time.

The brown rice pasta (spaghetti) that fell apart when I cooked it in vigorously boiling water on the stove, came out just right in the Pasta Boat.

Same with the multi-grain penne but it needed to cook much longer - not al dente but much too chewy with regular cooking times - starting with cold water it took 24 minutes to reach an edible stage.

Edited by andiesenji (log)

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Basically echoing Andie's reply, the lid of the box has measuring holes for serving sizes, the website has recipes for up to 4 servings. The only definitive recipe calls for 3 cups of rotini for 4 servings. I add salt to the water before cooking as well though the recipes don't mention it. The side of the box has fill lines for the quantity of water. The bottom of the box is stepped so the pasta (spagetti/linguini)doesn't sit right on the bottom of the box, so there is water below the pasta as well.

I had a minor (repeat minor) stroke back in November. Residual effects are numbness/tingling on the left side of my face and in my left hand. While I have no particular weakness in my left hand or arm it is more of a strain or effort to lift things than with my right. I did not buy this with that in mind but it is an unforseen benefit. I can see how this would be a huge benefit to anyone with arthritis or another disability in that lifting and draining a large pot of water would be a large barrier.

p

Link to post
Share on other sites

I saw this demo'd on an ep of Test Kitchen a while back.   I was very intereseted

 

""   Not having to deal with a large pan of the water was what pushed me in the direction of a different way of cooking pasta. "'

 

this would do long pasta flat, and no pot etc.

 

BB$B did not have this on display, you had to order it.  

 

if they had one in-store  Im sure Id get it  (  20 % Off ! )  for ease of use for long pasta.

 

here is the ep :

 

https://www.americastestkitchen.com/products/5345-fasta-pasta-microwave-cooker

 

and

 

https://www.cooksillustrated.com/equipment_reviews/1532-microwave-pasta-cookers

 

Id not start the 14 day free trial if I were you.

Edited by rotuts (log)
Link to post
Share on other sites

I saw this demo'd on an ep of Test Kitchen a while back.   I was very intereseted

 

""   Not having to deal with a large pan of the water was what pushed me in the direction of a different way of cooking pasta. "'

 

this would do long pasta flat, and no pot etc.

 

BB$B did not have this on display, you had to order it.  

 

if they had one in-store  Im sure Id get it  (  20 % Off ! )  for ease of use for long pasta.

 

here is the ep :

 

https://www.americastestkitchen.com/products/5345-fasta-pasta-microwave-cooker

 

and

 

https://www.cooksillustrated.com/equipment_reviews/1532-microwave-pasta-cookers

 

Id not start the 14 day free trial if I were you.

Interesting. The one I have is the one they did not recommend! But it was not its floppiness that made it fail in my eyes but that it did not cook pasta evenly. Obviously I am going to have to give it another chance. Thanks for sharing this.

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

Link to post
Share on other sites

I still don't get it. Why not just cook the pasta in a small amount of water on the stove?

Because I have arthritis in my hands and weakness in my arms and tremors.  I simply can't control even a small amount of slopping liquid in a saucepan without scalding myself.  The weight of the saucepan plus the water makes it difficult for me to control moving it across the kitchen to the sink.

My microwave has plenty of counter room in front so I can virtually slide the Pasta Boat out and set it down and then apply the lid and slide it to the sink and tip it to drain it. 

And I don't have to watch it or stir it while it is cooking.  I can go off and do something else until I hear the clang (my microwave signals are loud) and return to the kitchen - or leave it there for a few minutes - it doesn't harm it, I have left it for 10 minutes or so with no problems.

 

I can handle saucepans with small amounts of food that isn't mostly liquid, which, if you don't have a good grip, can shift and slop around a lot when one is shaky. 

 

All this has been a change from the way I used to cook.  At one time I had no difficulty moving heavy kettles, cast iron frying pans and heavy copper skillets and pots but I can no longer do that.  And I am not alone.  Many of us are aging and we have to make changes to accomodate our dwindling strength.  It's that simple.

 

I actually tried the Fasta Pasta first but was not happy when the lit popped off while draining lasagna noodles which landed in the sink. Wasted.  It worked okay with smaller pasta but then I used it with what may have been a bit too much tortellini and that went down the sink when the lid popped off. 

That's when I got the Pasta Boat - recommended by a friend who not only uses them herself but got extras for her kids who are at university and live in dorms where they can have microwaves in their rooms but have to trek to the other end of the building to use the kitchens. 

I believe it has greater capacity too. 

Edited by andiesenji (log)
  • Like 3

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Because I have arthritis in my hands and weakness in my arms and tremors.  I simply can't control even a small amount of slopping liquid in a saucepan without scalding myself.  The weight of the saucepan plus the water makes it difficult for me to control moving it across the kitchen to the sink.

My microwave has plenty of counter room in front so I can virtually slide the Pasta Boat out and set it down and then apply the lid and slide it to the sink and tip it to drain it. 

And I don't have to watch it or stir it while it is cooking.  I can go off and do something else until I hear the clang (my microwave signals are loud) and return to the kitchen - or leave it there for a few minutes - it doesn't harm it, I have left it for 10 minutes or so with no problems.

 

I can handle saucepans with small amounts of food that isn't mostly liquid, which, if you don't have a good grip, can shift and slop around a lot when one is shaky. 

 

All this has been a change from the way I used to cook.  At one time I had no difficulty moving heavy kettles, cast iron frying pans and heavy copper skillets and pots but I can no longer do that.  And I am not alone.  Many of us are aging and we have to make changes to accomodate our dwindling strength.  It's that simple.

 

---------------------

 

Hang in there. If you go to youtube and check out robots, you will be amazed how incredible they are progressing in humanizing robots.

 

At this point, robots are probably $200,000 each, but remember, microwave was $10,000, color TV was $50,000 not too long ago?

 

 

dcarch

Link to post
Share on other sites

Andiesenji  made a good case for the Pasta Boat so I decided to get one after I received a gift card that allowed me to get one  at no cost to me.  We used it yesterday.  It is lighter than a pan full of water, uses less water and so it boils faster than a big pot on the stove. It is easier to drain and I didn't have to watch it for over-boiling.  Whether it saves time or not isn't as compelling as simplicity of using it. Just drop in the spaghetti, put in some water, pop it in the nuker, set the timer and move on to other things, drain it when done and it's ready.  It is also a handy steamer for potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn on the cob and the like. 

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

Wait till you use it for things like ravioli - that is where it really shines.  I always have some come apart in the cooking water on the stove top.  Not only my homemade ones but those I buy - the fresh ones from Trader Joe's or Whole Foods or some of the other places that have them refrigerated. 

No matter how careful I am, they have to be stirred a bit or some stick together and when I try to separate them they break.

 

This simply doesn't happen with the Pasta Boat.

  • Like 3

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...