Pasta! The Academia Barilla My summertime cooking habits are reflected in the number of pasta books I've been buying lately: I want to get in and out of the kitchen fairly quickly. But this also reflects the sheer diversity of pasta - there are so many varieties and shapes, fresh and dried, and they're matched (if not surpassed) by the number of sauces, leading to countless permutations. Pasta! is not comprehensive, but that's not surprising considering the vast subject. Each region of Italy has its own pasta specialities and there are variations not just from village to village but from household to household. The book was compiled by the Academia Barilla, a Parma, Italy-based organisation dedicated to preserving the country's culinary traditions. Pasta! starts with the history of commercial dried pasta (Barilla is an Italian food firm renowned for its pasta production). The chapters are then divided into types of pasta: for durum wheat semolina pasta, there are recipes for linguine with lobster, fusilli with uncooked sauce, and maccheroncini with meatballs. Egg pasta recipes include tagliatelle with truffle, Piedmonte-style fettucine and pappar- delle with hare sauce. For filled pasta, there's cannelloni stuffed with ricotta and sausage, lasagne Bolognese, and swiss chard with ricotta-stuffed tortelli. There are also speciality pasta dishes such as pumpkin gnocchi and dumplings with beans.