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30-minute pasta recipes perfect for a cold night in

spaghetti with cockles
Shellfish spaghetti is just one route to take - Matt Austin

I’ve always been fascinated by the names of all the different varieties of pasta, from commonplace penne to twin-strand spiral gemelli and the rustic squares of maltagliati.

I can only imagine the board meetings that take place at the HQs of Italy’s pasta producers to decide on new names; the options seem never-ending. Luckily that means plenty of inspiration for us cooks.

As a hoarder of larder goods, I may have too many types of pasta in my pantry, but I’d hate to be without spaghetti for my Dorset cockle vongole (my British take on spaghetti alle vongole below uses cockles instead of the traditional clams), or bucatini, the hollow version, for sauce-rich dishes.

Mark grates fresh Parmesan over his dish of rustic maltagliati pasta
Mark grates fresh Parmesan over his dish of rustic maltagliati pasta - Matt Austin

I also love maltagliati, a rough-cut, squarish pasta popular in Italy’s Emilia-Romagna region that’s good in vegetable pasta dishes like the one below, or with a meat ragu base.

With plenty to play with, a quick pasta fix is never far away.