Using a pasta drying rack is something that will help you take your homemade pasta making to the next level, and help you avoid having your fresh pasta stick and had to be redone, drying your pasta right is a very important part of making pasta at home. If you made fresh pasta at home before you already know how crucial it is to let your pasta dry in the right way otherwise your freshly cut pasta will dry on top of each other and stick back into another form of dough.
I used to dry my pasta on a traditional pasta drying rack made from wood, which is the way pasta had been dried for many generations in my family, and indeed I find nothing wrong with using this method, until a friend of mine gave a gift the Marcato Atlas Pasta Drying Rack, which comes from another family who been making fresh pasta for many generations (perhaps even longer than my heritage ), at first this looked to me like some kind of a toy I do not need in my kitchen, when I opened the packaged the thing looked like a tripod, a pasta tripod, I wasn’t sure if this is the right pasta gadget for me. Then one day I was invited to make fresh pasta at another friend kitchen where he also had the same fancy pasta drying rack, that was the night everything changed. When I saw the pasta drying rack out I told my friend are you sure we can use this thing, and she assured me, just give it a try you won’t be able to make pasta without it after, I promise you. and indeed she was right, I had never made fresh pasta without it since.
It is no surprise that pasta makers like the Marcato family thought about such a great pasta gadget, such a fantastic mix of innovation, technology and pasta making tradition, the drying rack is made in Italy and comes with 16 8″ arms that fan out to dry pasta conveniently, it’s really beautiful to see the pasta drying on this rack, and more so it is super easy to place the pasta on it, the arms rotate all together so one pasta does not fold on top of the other, and when you are done, you can simply fold them all together, so it does not take much kitchen space, while providing you more space to dry your pasta on (I don’t know any other pasta drying rack which can fit almost two lbs of pasta)
The Marcato Atlas pasta drying rack is made of polycarbonate and chrome plated steel which are very durable, but also very easy to clean. if you used a wood pasta drying rack before you know that the pasta always stick to it and that it takes a bit of an effort to clean, this is not the case with this drying rack, you can simply wipe it with a wet paper towel or even wash it in the sink, its that simple.
One more thing which I really like about this new type of pasta rack is that it has this handle that you can place below your pasta maker as the pasta comes out of the blade, it falls on top of it, then you can lift it and place it on the rack rather than touch the pasta with your hands (keeps both your hands and the pasta clean!)
after writing this post, one of the readers of this blog (Thanks Amy) pointed me to the fact that KitchenAid have now a very similar pasta drying rack, the “KitchenAid Pasta Drying Rack“, it looks almost similar to the Marcato Atlas pasta drying rack and from reading a bit about it, it sounds like the same machine, both made from the same material at least and has the exact same features. Amy says that she is happy with it, and I believe that there is no reason not to be, I still prefer the Marcato one, there is something about pasta that makes me more attracted to the Italian brand.