I saw a commercial on televison for preparing spaghetti without boiling the noodles, just place them in water for about on hour. Can this be done?

  • Was it a commercial for instant noodles? They exist, but are preprocessed. Normal noodles can't work with just soaking. – rumtscho Feb 28 '14 at 22:28
  • This is practically a duplicate of Could rice or pasta be cooked without hot water? but I guess there might be a difference between "boiling" and "hot" water. – Aaronut Mar 2 '14 at 13:33

You can certainly cook spaghetti in water as low as 180 F.

Soaking it in cooler water will hydrate the starches if you wait long enough, but won't cook the proteins, so may not be optimal.

  • 6
    Sort of like eating raw, wet dough. – Aaronut Mar 2 '14 at 13:32

There are two types of noodles sold on the market, instant and normal.

If you purchased a random package of noodles, SAJ14SAJ's answer applies (although I am not sure if the 180 F is indeed enough - I have higher figures for the gelation of wheat starch in my head). There is some temperature a little bit below boiling which will work, but less than that will not end well.

If you have noodles marked as "instant noodles", they might work with just adding water. You have to follow the instructions on the package, because they might need fairly hot water too. But you can't use regular noodles that way.

Instant noodles are rare. If you are not sure what kind you bought, you probably have the ones which need cooking.

  • The 180 F number comes from Kenji Alt. – SAJ14SAJ Mar 25 '14 at 15:52

You need hot water. Otherwise you will have just a bunch of pasta made soft-soaked in cold water. Something I won't really eat.

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