Never Get A Pasta Stain Again With These Easy Tips!

Look, we all know once you come through our doors, all bets are off. You are getting your favourite plate of Pasta Pantry and you’re demolishing the entire thing and probably asking for seconds. We get it. That plate of pasta doesn’t stand a chance. But every once in a while, in your pasta-driven passion, you’re bound to get a little too wild and let a little sauce drip onto your shirt. But never fear, your local Sherwood Park Trattoria is here with a few tips in guarding against your pasta spills!

The first thing you’re going to want to do is wear red, because sauce (tomato sauce) is red. That way stains will easily wash right out should they occur. It’s simple, it’s genius, it’s dad-inspired:

 

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Next, unfold a napkin and place it on your lap and tuck one into the front of your shirt to protect yourself from any pasta sauce that decides to go rogue. You should also have an extra napkin handy to dab the corners of your mouth. If you’re worried that the person you’re eating with will question your over-use of a napkin, just ask them a question every time you go to dab your mouth, which will distract them from your dabbing (and will make you seem more engaged in conversation). You’ll be both stain free and an expert conversationalist.

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Next, and this is especially pertinent if you ordered a long pasta, but can be used if you ordered short too–make sure you have a spoon on hand! For long noodles, you can use it as a small platform to roll your pasta into perfectly bite sized pieces that won’t have any stray noodles flopping all over the place! But what’s more, you can use it to hold underneath your fork as you bring the pasta to your mouth, and it’ll catch any dripping sauce that may try to escape from your fork.

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Speaking of mouths (we’re always speaking of mouths at Pasta Pantry), this is about the simplest, but most effective way you can eat pasta without making a mess: open your mouth up wide enough that you aren’t hitting the side of your mouth with the pasta. But be careful! Don’t open your mouth up so wide it’s strenuous. You’ll look silly. And the last thing you want to do while wearing your red shirt, your napkin bib and apron, and religiously holding your spoon under your fork while dabbing your mouth every few seconds, is look silly.

But in all honesty, bibs are optional, and the only thing you have to do at Pasta Pantry is enjoy your meal! And we promise, you will, because it’s the place to always get “REAL FOOD, REAL FAST, REAL FRESH!”

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The Always Fresh, Full-Flavour, Homemade Pasta Pantry Soups!

Our soups embody exactly what makes Pasta Pantry such a beloved Sherwood Park fixture: they’re classic, timeless flavours homemade with fresh ingredients from top to bottom. Or in other words, they’re “REAL FOOD, REAL FRESH, REAL FAST.” So let’s take a look at our two soups!

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Our Minestrone Soup has been with us since the dawn of time. It is a Margaret Satanove original recipe and is a spin on an old Italian classic. The soup is made of a mixture of seasonal, fresh vegetables in a perfectly seasoned and savoury broth. And we’ll let you in on our little secret: IT CURES EVERYTHING!

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Our Tomato Soup is the new kid on the block, having recently been added to our menu and joining our once solo Minestrone soup. Since it has been added, it has been met with an incredible amount of positive feed back and reviews from the Sherwood Park and Edmonton community. The soup itself is made with fresh tomatoes, herbs, spices, and an Italian cheese blend. It is garnished with our garlic croutons and Parmesan cheese. This soup may just be on its way to getting Rookie Of The Year.

Don’t forget that our soups can be mixed and matched with both our pastas and salads.They are the perfect complete combo for only $11.95!

Now the only question remains: which will you choose? Let us know at @PastaPantry on Twitter!

Pasta Pantry Is Putting Meals On The Tables Of Those In Need

We’re excited to announce that Pasta Pantry is helping children and their families fill their bellies and give them the strength to improve their health! We’re teaming up with FC Edmonton and the Ronald McDonald House to put meals on the tables of families who need our help and we couldn’t be happier about it!

A tragedy strikes a family and their child is stricken with a serious illness or injury. Often, this happens to a family that isn’t close to an appropriate hospital or medical service and they need to relocate their entire family to be near that facility for days, or weeks, or more! Not only is this morally devastating, but it can also be expensive for a family that drops everything, including work commitments. They still need to feed, clothe, and care for their entire family. What the Ronald McDonald House does is provide a place to stay and food to eat for more than 10,000 families a year at little to no cost to them. This allows the children to get the loving care they need from both the medical practitioners and their families in order to get well. However, the money for their accommodations, food, and everything else, has to come from somewhere. This is where Pasta Pantry comes in.

In a partnership with FC Edmonton, Pasta Pantry will be participating in “Goals for a Cause.” We will be providing a meal for the families at the Ronald McDonald House in Edmonton for each goal that FC Edmonton scores during the 2015 NASL regular season home games. A few select players from FC Edmonton will be hand delivering the the food to the Ronald McDonald. Hopefully fuelled by the power of “REAL FOOD, REAL FAST, REAL FRESH,” these children can get the strength the need to get healthier!

So, the next time you tune into an FC Edmonton, make sure to cheer extra hard for them to score, because not only will your favourite NASL team be putting points on the board, but they’ll also be putting food in the bellies of grieving families.

If you want to learn more about the Ronald McDonald House, or see how you can help, go here: http://www.rmhccanada.ca/inside-rmhc/about-ronald-mcdonald-house-charities/

In The Community: Competitive Thread

For the better part of four years, we’ve been teamed up with Competitive Thread and have been providing the hockey program with their daily nutritional fuel through a lunch program. Our lunch program has quickly taken off amongst their players, with a starting rate just shy of a 50% buy-in, to a now near 100% buy in of all players. Obviously, our pasta fuel is giving them some kind of competitive edge!

Competitive Thread offers testing and development to emerging Albertan athletes and teams that is individualized to both single athletes and entire teams. This is not your standard private skill training session. Through their testing system, players are able to see measurable benchmarks and are able to identify their strengths and weakness and what they need to do to get to the next level in their athletic future. Competitive Thread also takes their testing scores and is able to compare them to their normative age group, size, and level to get a true evaluation for where they stand.

This type of objective measurable information is an invaluable resource for an athlete’s progression in their sport.

If you’re interested, they still have some room left in their up coming development camps, which you can learn more about on their BRAND NEW website here: http://www.competitivethread.com – You can also add them on Twitter @comp_thread and their Facebook is CompetitiveThread

“Competitive thread, you dream, we show you how to get there.”

If you are interested in the development side of the program, which we are proudly a sponsor of (along with KAL tire and Sherwood Ford), you can see their open availability here:

http://www.competitivethread.com/development_page/development.php

Made Fresh Daily From Scratch: Our Oven Baked, Too Good To Be True, Pastas

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There is no better place to go than Pasta Pantry for a home-cooked dish and there is nothing that screams home-cooked meal more than our mouth-watering, too good to be true, oven baked pastas.

Our Pasticcio uses a the perfect mixture of short pasta cuts, comes in three different homemade sauces (meat, hot italian sausage, and vegetarian) and is baked with kilos upon kilos of Mozza, Parmigano, Pecorino Romano, Ricotta, and Asiago as far as the eye can see.

This is our most famous dish and trust us, you’ll know why when you taste it!

Mac N’ Cheese is a dish that is served on all ends of the spectrum: you can find it in your mother’s kitchen, to Pasta Pantry, to high-end restaurants and hotels.

Pasta Pantry’s version of the Mac and Cheese is baked like a casserole in the oven and uses four high end cheeses: Grana Padano Parmigiano, Pecorino Romano, Ricotta, and Asiago. If there’s a cheese heaven, this is it.

Want to know the secret to our Mac N Cheese? We go a little heavy on the cream, but how heavy? Well, we can’t give up everything, now can we?

Choose a small plate of our baked pasta for $9.95 or an all you can eat large for $12.95 with your choice of sauce. The Pasticcio can be made gluten free for those on a non-gluten diet. For the best value, match it with a salad for only a $13.95!

Hopefully we’ve inspired you to come down to where you’re always going to get “REAL FOOD, REAL FRESH, REAL FAST!”

The 10 Most Important Pasta Facts You’ll Ever Need

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Since we’re dedicated to bringing you the best in everything and anything pasta related, we’ve written up 10 pasta tips to get the most from your pasta at home. The very first thing you’re going to want to start with is picking up some of our homemade pasta. You can see our options for our for our made fresh daily pasta HERE. 

Now that you got yourself some of our pasta, here’s how to get the most out of your home-cooked meal!

1) Generously salt your pasta water. Do not add salt to the sauce. Your salt water should taste almost like seawater.

2) Do not let your pasta dry off. Drain the water, but don’t let it sit. It will start to stick together if you do.

3) Don’t rinse your pasta after draining unless you are making cold pasta. The starch and salt on the cooked pasta is crucial to the flavour and richness of a good pasta.

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4) Save the pasta water. Add a spoonful of it to your sauce after you have mixed the cooked pasta into it. This will help the sauce adhere to the cooked pasta and will improve each bite!

5) The ratio of pasta to water matters. Having too much water increases the boiling point and can lead to the pasta being cooked too long and being overdone.

6) A perfectly cooked pasta is a little hard to the tooth. If it sticks to your gums, it is overdone. This is called “Al Dente” which means literally “to the tooth.”

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10) Skip all the aforementioned steps and come into Pasta Pantry! Where you’ll always get “REAL FOOD, REAL FRESH, REAL FAST.”

See you soon, Sherwood Park!
    

Take Brilliant Flavours Home With You!

The weather is getting warmer and warmer every day and we’re getting closer and closer to everyone’s favourite season, patio season! That means grilling, outdoor cooking, and family gatherings and we have the perfect thing to give your cooking that little extra umpfh! Our Caesar dressing, Creamy Italian dressing, and Pesto! Take them home with you and they’ll be your secret weapon this summer! Here’s a few ways you can use them in your dishes!

First, all of our sauces make fantastic compliments to any grilled meats. They can be used as a basting sauce or used to marinate just about anything. Particularly, our Caesar and a Salmon go exceptionally well together, but don’t be afraid to experiment. The possibilities are deliciously endless.

Pesto Sauce (8 oz – $7.95 / 12 oz – $10.95)
Obviously other than being a delicious substitute (or addition) to tomato sauce, it’s also great for replacing tomato sauce on cheese bread or pizza. It is a healthier alternatives to mayonnaise on sandwiches. You can mix it into salads or use it as dip for veggies and it’ll compliment those morning eggs like you wouldn’t believe!

Caesar / Creamy Italian Dressing (8 oz – $5.96 / 12 oz – $6.95 / 16 oz – $7.95 / 32 oz – $12.95)
Of course, both of our dressings are perfect for sandwiches (remember our secret menu items?), but beyond that, both of them are absolutely delicious over perfectly grilled asparagus, broccoli, or any other roasted vegetable. They can also be used to make some of the best pasta salads known to man.

For something a little more fun, grill a chicken, shred it, and roll them up in romaine leafs and then dip them in either (or both) dressings.

If there is a secret way you use our dressings, let us know! We’re always looking for inventive ways people are thinking up!

And as always, if you’re looking for a meal that is “REAL FOOD, REAL FAST, REAL FRESH” don’t hesitate to come down to Sherwood Park!

Step Into Spring With Our Salads

The weather forecast for the next few weeks is looking mighty warm for mid march and it seems like we might be having Spring a little early this year! With warmer weather, often you’ll want to eat on the lighter side of the menu–though, you’re certainly not forced to!

It just so happens that we enjoy a little fame in Sherwood Park (and Edmonton) for our light homemade salads! Here’s a small rundown of both our Caesar Salad and our Creamy Italian Salad. The only question is: which are you going to choose? (BOTH!)

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Sticking to our motto of real food, real fresh, real fast, our Creamy Italian is made from scratch daily with fresh romaine lettuce, carrots, tomatoes, purple cabbage, and a creamy Italian dressing. It’s light, delicious, and will have you looking and feeling beach-ready in no time!

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Our Caesar dressing is homemade daily with our own, personalized recipe using only the freshest ingredients. The olive oil we use to make the dressing is exceptionally high-quality, the romaine lettuce is fresh, crisp, and the parmesan is freshly grated grana parmigiano cheese imported from Italy. Last, we #bringonthegarlic! This salad can also be gluten free, just make sure to ask for no croutons!

Don’t forget that both the caesar dressing and the creamy Italian can be bought togo in squeeze bottles. With patio season coming up, you’re sure to do a lot of grilling this summer. Both dressings are perfect for topping a salmon fillet or steak, using it as a dipping sauce for bread, vegetables, and marinating chicken breasts. The possibilities are endless!

A Night At The Movies: Best Pasta Movie Scene

The 87th Academy Awards were last Sunday and with all the great movies this year, it had us feeling nostalgic for some old classics and it got us to thinking: what’s the best movie scene that involves pasta?

Now, there’s quite a long list of films to choose from, but we managed to narrow it down to just 5. Without further ado, here are your nominees for the category of “Best Pasta Movie Scene Of All Time.”

Elf: pasta with maple syrup.

Godfather: Clemenza’s spaghetti recipe.

Lady & The Tramp: the kiss

Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs: the spaghetti tornado

Goodfellas: dinner in prison

And the winner of the best movie pasa scene of all time is…

[drum roll]

Lady & The Tramp: the kiss!

Was there really ever any doubt? Will anything ever top this magical moment between man’s best friend? Doubtful. But if you disagree, let us know! We want to hear what you think is the best pasta scene of all time!

And if you’re feeling like creating a little pasta scene yourself, come on down to Pasta Pantry in Sherwood Park where we’re always serving up “REAL FOOD, REAL FRESH, REAL FAST.”

Community Support: World’s Longest Hockey Game

On February 6th-16th, 40 incredibly brave hockey players embarked on a 10 day journey to challenge the Guinness World Record title of World’s Longest Hockey Game and to raise over $1 million to go towards purchasing a PET-MR scanner at the Cross Cancer Institute.

Both teams and officials pose for a picture:
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We had the honour of donating food to the players and stopping by a few times to support them as they neared their goal. In the end, they were able to beat their intended goal of $1 million AND the world record of World’s Longest Hockey Game by four hours!

We all know that everyone on the ice came away as winners, but you still might be wondering who won. In the end, Team Red emerged victorious on the scoreboard and handed Team White a 2,161 to 2,062 loss.

It’s always amazing to see the Sherwood Park community coming together to achieve amazing things. We’re very fortunate to have found ourselves in such a great community of like-minded individuals.

If you want to see more about the event, check out this video by the Alberta Councer Foundation:

And if you want to donate to a great cause, visit the Alberta Cancer Foundation’s Website: http://albertacancer.ca/