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From: Doug (
Subject:         Re: Barilla Plus Spaghetti
Date: August 23, 2007 at 6:13 am PST

In Reply to: Re: Barilla Plus Spaghetti posted by Jeff Novick, MS, RD, LD, LN on August 22, 2007 at 6:11 pm:

>> What do you mean by having difficulty acheiving good results?

Gummy/gluey. Extremely difficult to achieve aldente, particularly with thinner shapes. Thick shapes tend to be overcooked (almost slimy) on outside before insides are properly cooked.

From the "America's Test Kitchen" (ATK) TV Show hosted by Cooks Illustrated Magazine on PBS:

>A coarse, gummy texture and out-of-place "oatmeal" flavor plagued too many of the whole wheat pastas we've tried in years past. Recently, however, the options available have multiplied dramatically. We decided to take another look.<

>Eight of the 10 contenders were made from whole durum wheat, the notably hard, dense wheat from which semolina, the primary ingredient in traditional pasta, is processed. Though texture has improved overall since our previous tastings, several of the pastas were almost as gritty and gluey as we remembered. Our top finishers, Ronzoni Healthy Harvest Whole Wheat Blend Pasta and Eden Organic, blended regular semolina with wheat bran and wheat fiber or whole durum wheat, respectively--so they're not 100 percent "whole" wheat. But the combination of a pleasantly chewy texture and deep, wheaty flavor was worth the minor nutritional trade-off.<

More of the review at

Lots of folks like the Barilla for the same reasons.

>> The product you posted is mostly refined flour, and low in fiber

Regular pasta is 2g fiber. The Barilla is 4g fiber. WW pasta is 4 to 6.9g, according to

The ATK-cited Ronzoni Healthy Harvest is 5g to 6g, according to

The ATK-cited Eden Organic is 60% WW and 5g fiber per

I agree with you on whole grains and minimal processing, but all pasta is a processed food. Cooked wheat berries are a far beter choice than any pasta, but we choose to compromise for convenience and palatability. I'm just trying to understand intelligent trade-offs in a vegetarian high-fiber, low-fat, low processed food diet.

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