26.Feb.2010 Review: Pasta Express

Whenever Jess and I visit the local Boscov’s department store, it’s more or less obligatory for us to stop by a nook on the second floor where the As Seen On TV items are displayed.

This occurs once or twice a month, each month.  Though the inventory rarely changes, and the prices seldom fluctuate, we follow the routine out of habit, on the off chance that we’ll score ourselves a bargain.

A couple of weeks ago, the retail chain gave us an offer we couldn’t refuse.

offer can't refuse

For the low, low price of 2.99, we took home the Pasta Express, an innovative and progressive breakthrough in the art of… boiling noodles.

Based on the commercial, we made out like bandits with our three dollar expenditure:

Thirty dollars….. Thirty?  Plus shipping?

I don’t think I’d have shelled out that kind of coin for any kitchenware.

But three bucks? That I could handle.

*******************************************

I’ll be honest…. I haven’t used the Pasta Express, per say.

The reason being, I had no idea that there were prerequisite items for unleashing the full Pasta Express potential.

Because the plastic cylinder that cooks the pasta is not microwave safe , a tea kettle is needed to boil  water for  filling the chamber.

We owned a tea kettle.  Owned being the operative word.  I believe ours was tossed in the trash a while back.  I don’t know the reason why, but I assume that the dog had something to do with it.  The little troublemaker.

Anyhow, because we’re tea kettle deprived, the only other way to get boiling water into the cannister was to pour it directly from the six-quart stock pot… and that’s potentially dangerous.  So, I decided to go the old-fashioned way, and just cook the pasta on the stove.

I can think of two instances where the Pasta Express would come in handy, though.

First, if you own a kettle, but not a colander, this may be the perfect pasta cooker for you.  It comes complete with a self-draining lid, so there’s no need for a separate strainer.

Then again, it’s extremely rare to come across a colander that costs thirty dollars plus shipping (Thirty?), so you could just run to the market and pick one up.  For a dollar or two.

Most cost two dollars. This ancient Egyptian one likely costs more than the Kelley Blue Book value of my car... or, at the very least, thirty dollars plus S & H

Or, if the price of gas continues to trend upward, it may be cost effective to invest in a kettle, boil some water, then turn off the heat the nanosecond the whistle sounds.

If my BTU conversion is on point, it would cost slightly more than 30 dollars to boil a pot of water if cooking gas were at a comparable price

If my BTU conversion is on point, it would cost slightly more than 30 dollars to boil a pot of water if cooking gas were at a comparable price

Otherwise, I’m more a proponent of conventional boiling methods.

This isn’t to say the that the Pasta Express is devoid of merit.

For one thing, it comes with a recipe guide.  Any variation on spaghetti served with Hunt’s garlic and onion tomato sauce is welcome by me.  Not that I don’t like spaghetti with Hunt’s sauce, but variety is good.  Change is good.  Gnocchi in a parsley butter sauce sounds really good.

Also, the Express could be used as a shaker to evenly distribute sauce on pasta. Or the plastic container and snap lid could serve as a more aesthetically pleasing alternative to leaving half-empty tri-colored fusilli packages in the cabinets or on countertops.

Any of these uses make our buy well worth the three dollars we paid out.

But thirty dollars? Are you kidding me?  Holy … thirty?

Where to Buy: Unable to find an official site. But, the cyber brands website is peddling them here

Price: The price on the above website is $19.99 + S & H

What’s that other quote from “The Godfather?”   The really famous one?: The one you’re likely thinking of is either “In Sicily, women are more dangerous than shotguns.” –or– “Leave the gun. Take the cannoli.”

(Photo sources: http://www.pcanonib.info;http://www.metmuseum.org;http://www.freakingnews.com)

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