If you really have to break pasta, here’s a trick to avoid making a mess

When long strands of spaghetti or linguine won’t fit in our chosen jar without sticking out, many of us have a tendency to quickly snap a handful in half – only to have small pieces of dried noodle shards fly all over the place. Sure, we’ve all been there, but this tip suggested by Taste of home can help. The outlet suggests wrapping the pasta in a clean kitchen towel before folding it to break up the strands; the towel will contain any stray bits of pasta, and then you can slip it all into your pot of water.

However, you might not want to use this hack if you have invited an Italian to dinner: according to Slatein pasta country, the long strands are meant to be wrapped around a fork (sometimes with the use of a spoon in the other hand), and the shorter pieces produced by snapping don’t turn out well.

It is even frowned upon in Italy to cut pieces of pasta on a plate with a knife, according to More time to travel – so you can imagine how bad a sin breaking him would be. So if you want to cook pasta the Italian way, add your spaghetti to the pan and let the ends stick out (via really simple). Then, in about a minute, the bottom parts will soften enough for you to toss the rest of the strand back into the pan, where they’ll all cook evenly and intact.