Pasta: it's pretty much the only food you ever cook, especially if we're gonna count ramen noodles. Additionally, there are dozens of cookbooks in the world, maybe more. And they have one thing in common: a lot of recipes that are not pasta. Naturally, we went out and found some cookbooks that contain nothing but recipes that are pasta.
Whether you're a rising sophomore ditching the meal plan or a senior looking to expand your culinary repertoire, these books will help you take your pasta game to the next level.
1. Beard on Pasta: A James Beard Cookbook, by James Beard
Don't let the weird image conjured up by the title dissuade you from picking up this gem of a cookbook. James Beard was a well-known American chef who, in his Wikipedia photo, does not appear to have had a beard. Reviewers say "I never meant to read this" and "The number of servings will depend on the place in the meal," neither of which make sense without any context.
2. Mario Batali Yells Pasta, by Mario Batali
This is actually a video cookbook, which is nice because you don't have to read (boring!). It's just 30 different angles of Mario Batali yelling "Pasta!" at the camera in an aggressive but helpful way. It helps to know Italian, because we think he's saying "pasta" in Italian. If anyone can translate, let us know!
3. Pasta Pasta Pasta: Part 7, by Amanda Luzzi
You can skip the first 6 books: this is the best Pasta Pasta Pasta volume of the whole series. This book is primarily concerned with penne and also ziti. People uninterested in the thin tube pastas should not bother opening this cookbook. Those vulgar people, however, have no place in a highrise kitchen (or other similarly elegant cookspace).
4. I Piss Pasta, by Pasta Pete
Another gross title, another great cookbook. Pasta Pete is really one of the great pasta-specific chefs of the 21st century, and, while it's unlikely that he urinates straight pasta, he knows more about it than almost anyone. Despite his rockstar attitude and short temper, Pete is known as the originator of some of the modern pasta scene's most intricate creations, including his now-famous Flambéed Truffle Rigatoni.
5. Modern Pasta, by Brigitte Careau
Difficult is an understatement when it comes to creating a cookbook that merges traditional pasta dishes with molecular gastronomy, but Careau hasn't just succeeded: she's knocked it out of the park. With recipes chock-full of foams and liquid nitrogen procedures, Modern Pasta is the perfect book for an ambitious pasta chef, or someone looking to impress a STEM-major date.
6. Pasta Recipes for Kindle Fire eReaders, by Michael Jordan
Before you ask: no, not the basketball Michael Jordan. This Michael Jordan is just some guy who compiled a bunch of recipes into an EPUB file. Keep in mind, it's an EPUB so you can't view it on standard Kindle e-readers; only on the Kindle Fire. It's not really a fantastic book, but it's OK if you have a Kindle Fire because it's cheap and it's searchable. Every single recipe is exactly the same (you heat up some tomato sauce to put on the pasta), the only thing that differs is the cook time based on the type of pasta. So it's useful if you already threw out the box but still need to know how long to cook your pasta.
7. Amy Gutmann's Pasta Cookbook, by Amy Gutmann
Amy Gutmann doesn't appear to have any significant background in the culinary arts, but neither do you, so who cares? Half of the book looks like grainy pictures of the recipes that they print on the back of Barilla boxes and the other half is handwritten sentences that say things like "pasta with shrimp is a nice meal," but we don't mind. Buy Amy's cookbook as soon as you can, because its price increases every year.