1. Salt is bad for you.
Unless you have specific doctor’s orders, get over it and use enough salt in the pasta water or the pasta will never taste right. For a pound of pasta, use 5 quarts of water and 3 tablespoons coarse salt, or half that much fine salt.
2. The secret is in the sauce.
If you believe that pasta is just a vehicle for sauce, save the carbs and just eat your sauce with a spoon. Pasta is the main attraction–all the more reason to buy a good brand. The sauce is acondimento and is dosed moderately.
3. The Italian way to eat spaghetti is with spoon and fork.
Nope. Just a fork, and certainly not a knife either. The trick to neat twirling is not to grab more than a couple of strands at a time.
4. Alfredo “sauce” contains cream (and is great on spaghetti and chicken breasts).
“Alfredo” is a way of dressing fettuccine (only), not a sauce you prepare and add to just anything. It consists of sweet butter and freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano. Period. A ton of each.
5. Pasta and salad go great together.
Not exactly. Serve the salad after, not alongside, the pasta, or brace for Italian ire. Pasta is served alone in its glory.