This $11 Tool Is All You Need to Make Fresh Pasta Like a Pro, According to a Pro

And it is not a KitchenAid attachment.

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Eppicotispai Garganelli and Gnocchi Stripper tout

Food & Wine / Reese Herrington

So here’s the thing: Taking on a new task in the kitchen can be tricky. From making the perfect cup of coffee to crafting the perfect pizza at home, we’re enlisting help from experts and professional chefs, in our new series, ‘Here’s the Thing,’ and asking them what products they think are essential. 

The other day, while waiting at the gym, I overheard my instructor talking about how she could “never” make pasta at home as good as an Italian restaurant. Although I thought that was a strange attitude for a workout instructor to have — I was under the impression workout coaches were supposed to be inspirational, to never say “never” — it’s an opinion that I think is pretty unanimous. 

It’s why Chef Michael Pini launched Brooklyn Pasta Lab, where he makes fresh pasta kits and ships them nationwide. Pini worked as a chef for over a decade at storied restaurants like Eleven Madison Park before opening his own business in 2017. I was skeptical at first, since he’s all the way in Brooklyn, and I’m all the way in Austin, Texas, but my rigatoni with spicy vodka sauce was the best I’ve ever eaten. My partner and I have already ordered from him again. 

But, it’s also inspired us to try our hand (again) at making pasta at home. And because of our past pasta failures, I turned to Pini for help. He said that “if you are a beginner and want to make quick, easy, cavatelli I would recommend ordering this simple tool.” It’s only $11, so I bought one. 



Eppicotispai Garganelli and Gnocchi Stripper

To buy: $11 (originally $12) at

This board is simple and not what I expected. It’s just a 8.19-inch by 3.54-inch by 0.79-inch beechwood board with ridges and a handle jutting out of one side. There’s also a little dowel that comes with it, presumably for rolling pasta. 

I was expecting a fancy KitchenAid attachment, or a ravioli cutter or, I don’t know, a MasterClass subscription, but Pini insists this is all you need to get started. 

“Cavatelli is always one of the first pasta shapes I recommend making as it doesn't require any machines — just a bowl, a knife, and a wooden surface,” he says. And besides, pairing it with a sauce is easy and it doesn't need anything fancy. In fact, Pini says he likes to pair cavatelli with “a classic tomato sauce or a spicy tomato sauce for a bit of kick.”

To make it, you make some pasta dough, roll it into a log, and cut it into pieces. Then you scrape the small pieces on the board like you would with a butter knife, and out pop perfectly formed, ridged cavatelli. You can check out this page for more detailed instructions, or even join Pini’s Pasta Community, where he outlines how he makes fresh pasta for his business. 

But overall, Pini was right. This whole time I was trying to make spaghetti and ravioli, I should’ve been starting with cavatelli. It would have been like lifting 100 pounds when I really should’ve been lifting 50 (looking at you, fitness coach). And cavatelli isn’t the only thing you can make with this board. Pini says it’s “perfect for garganelli and gnocchi” as well.

All in all, this $11 board not only helped my pasta making, but it has begun to transform my space into the Rustic Tuscan Kitchen I’ve always wanted. It’s a great decoration in between pasta making sessions. All I’m missing now is an olive tree. 

At the time of publishing, the price was $11. 

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