Benvenuti to the Barilla Test Kitchen!

We’ve bee85WholeGrainPenne1_Cabbage6344n doing a lot of work lately in the kitchen with our customers’ help to achieve the best flavor pairings with our whole grain pastas. Getting a whole grain pasta dish to succeed on the menu isn’t as simple as swapping it for traditional pasta. It’s a bit like pairing wine with food – some pairings bring out the best qualities in both, and some don’t work as well. After all, to earn its place on the menu, a dish has to appeal to more than just the health-conscious diner!

Here’s some of what we’ve learned, and principles to help you in your healthy culinary development:

Whole grains have a more assertive flavor profile than refined grains, so you want to choose ingredients and vegetables that can match that intensity.

Ingredients that Pair Well With Whole Grain Pastas

  • Vegetables such as kale, cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli rabe, asparagus and brussels sprouts
  • Mushrooms of all types, especially earthy wild and exotic types like morels, porcini or chanterelle
  • Aged, cow’s-milk cheeses of Northern Italy, like Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • Heat from chilies or crushed red pepper flakes (peperoncino)

In the next issue, we’ll look at cooking techniques that can also lead to great-tasting whole grain dishes.

Lorenzo Boni Lo Res RGB


Lorenzo Boni, Executive Chef, Barilla America