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Long extruded - Common round-rod pastas like Spaghetti and its size counterparts Spaghettoni and Spaghettini belong here. Other often-used long noodles include different variants of Capellini (like Angel Hair pasta), Fusilli (spindles) and Bucatini (little-holed spaghetti).
Decorative pasta - Pastas that look like bowties (Farfalle) and seashells (Conchiglie) fall under this category. They vary in bulk and colors, oftentimes served as an assorted dish. The Rotelle (wagon wheels) in some countries, is a popular choice among kids.
Ribbon-cut - A flat sheet of pasta dough that is cut into ribbon-like strips. The Lasagna (sheets), Pappardelle (thick flat ribbon) and Fettuccine (usually paired with Alfredo sauce) belong in this category. Eggs are at times used in addition to flour to make the noodles thicker.
Minute pasta - This class of pasta is commonly used in soups, sometimes even as an alternate accompaniment for rice. Most minute pastas resemble the shape of a grain or a bead, which makes them pretty small, hence the name.
Short-cut extruded - Short cuts are rolled up, making for a thicker, tube-like pasta. Formations vary from a Garganelli (square egg noodle) to something as spindled as a Fussili (corkscrew pasta). Some casserole dishes are made of Penne (macaroni tubes) as well.
Stuffed pasta - Basically this is pasta dough stuffed with a variety of ingredients before being bundled into a shell. The Tortellini (little pies) is a well-known example. The Ravioli, meanwhile is stuffed with ground meat, vegetables and cheese. It is also a favorite.