I posted about this idea over at my new crafty Facebook page and have been itching to try it out.
It was much, much, much more successful than I imagined.
Usually when I mix colors, they all sort of blend together and create a brownish sludge.
Mmmm. Here's your brownish sludge pasta. Enjoy!
But the instructions were easy to follow and with a little on-the-spot tinkering, I think the dish turned out surprisingly well. Emme was ecstatic and demanded we save some leftovers for her school lunch.
You can find a detailed how-to through the crafty Facebook site, but here are some tips I figured out along the way.
Rinse. A LOT.
The instructions say to boil the pasta and then cool it down with cold water to stop the cooking. Make sure it's cold before you move the pasta, in batches, to the plastic bags filled with food dye. (Probably best if you read the DIY first. I'm assuming you did.) Let the pasta sit in the dye for at least a minute; two is even better. Emme loved mixing it around.
Once colored, return each batch to the strainer and rinse like crazy, especially if you're using a pasta with ruffles and creases, such as the farfalle. Spaghetti or something straighter might not need so much.
The instructions say to return all colored pasta batches, once rinsed again, to the same big pot for mixing. I recommend instead putting each batch in its own bowl, so that any excess colored water runoff doesn't mix with other runoff and create a big brown sludge.
When you're ready for serving, you can add pasta from each bowl into your serving bowl and then microwave to warm up. This worked wonders to keep all the colors separate and vibrant until ready to eat. Even in the serving dish, the colors stayed perfect.
We just ate with butter and freshly grated cheese because we didn't the sauce to taint the whole rainbowness of it all. I've definitely had more delicious pasta in my life, but this was the most colorful by far. Yes, yes, you can make an argument that dyed food probably isn't the best thing in the world, but it's not like it's an everyday thing, and stop being so goddamn judgmentalish anyway. Enjoy life. It's more fun that way.