Jeff Caplan’s Minute of News: What? No Pasta? Stai scherzando!
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SALT LAKE CITY — We are grappling with a pasta shortage. It’s not as bad as the toilet paper shortage. You’ll still find a few stray boxes of noodles on the grocery shelf. But I went shopping this weekend and there’s a gaping hole where the bucatini and fusilli and farfalle are supposed to be.
Now I know. It used to be we had only three kinds of pasta. Spaghetti, to feed a family on the cheap. Lasagna, for the family chef who has patience. And macaroni paired with powdered cheese.
In Utah, there’s a fourth pasta — Spaghettios Jello.
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In other words, these days we have choices. The proliferation of pasta has left us blessed with an overwhelming number of noodle shapes s like orecchiete, imbarazzo, and tripolini (one of those names is made up, can you guess which one? Answer coming up.)
The reason you might not find any of them on store shelves now is, of course, supply chain issues. But looming larger is the availability of durum wheat from Canada. Their vicious wildfires last summer and all the choking smoke cut into the crop yield.
And we’re not going to be seeing a lot of durum wheat out of Ukraine– a major producer. So we might have to suffer from a limited number of pasta choices.
Or you can cut your pasta consumption the Japanese way, by enjoying a spaghetti sandwich. Squiggly noodles and tomato sauce slathered between two slices of white bread. Mmmmm?
Finally, if you’re a true pasta connoisseur you knew that the second choice, imbarazzo, is not pasta.
It’s the Italian word for embarrassment.
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