Okay, so I succumbed. I bought the “Pasta n’ More.” It was on the clearance shelf for six bucks, and we eat boatloads of pasta, so I had to try it. I know what you’re thinking: this from the industry that makes millions by selling fleece robes that you wear backwards (you know what I’m talking about). Did I mention it was six bucks?
What’s the verdict? It’s not all bad. I followed the instructions in the little booklet, and cooked my angel hair for the appointed time. Was it perfect, as they promised? It wasn’t bad. And I didn’t have to stand over the boiling water and babysit the pot while it cooked. I could get back to the important things in life like watching more infomercials and Wii Cow Racing. It’s especially nice in Summer to have the steam vapors locked up in the microwave rather than heating up the house.
On the down side, I couldn’t seem to manage using the top with the holes in it to drain the pasta. The first time I tried, the top just popped off and the pasta all landed in the sink. Note to self: hold the top on. But while holding the top on, the scalding water came dangerously close to burning my fingers. I gave up on the top and went back to using a colander to drain the noodles…not a big deal.
The Pasta n’ More made it easy to throw the noodles in and just come back later, so I found myself making more pasta salads and macaroni dishes. One day, I was scraping yet another mess of brown rice off the bottom of the pan when the light bulb went on. Could the pasta cooker handle brown rice too? Absolutely. I had to experiment with the timing, but never again will I scrub a nasty pan caked with gummy rice. Our house is in starch heaven.
I haven’t yet tried steaming vegetables with the small steaming attachment. I ordinarily use the vegetables that come in their own steaming bag, and I can’t imagine anything that could be easier than that.
I like the Pasta n’ More, and I’ve used it much more often than I thought I would. The only caveat is to be very careful if you use the drain top. Other than that, it’s very easy to use. I suppose soon I’ll be cooking pasta while reclining on the couch in my backwards bathrobe.