Although cooking pasta may seem fairly straightforward, it is actually quite easy to make mistakes in the process. First of all, one must be sure to cook pasta just long enough. Do not believe what is written on the package. Pasta must always be cooked until it is “al dente,” meaning cooked, but not to the point of becoming sticky. You should feel a slight resistance when chewing.
To be sure that your pasta is cooked correctly, it is enough to follow a few, simple rules. To begin with, you should keep in mind the right quantities. In Italy, the golden rule for cooking pasta is 1, 10, 100 or 1 liter of water, 10 grams of salt for every 100 grams of pasta (Converted for American cooks, the rule should be 1/3, 3, 30, referring to 1/3 oz of salt, 3 oz of pasta and 30 oz of water. Note that the order of the ingredients changes in the conversion.)
These proportions guarantee that the pasta will have enough water to move around in during cooking and that the water will return to a boil shortly after the pasta is added.