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The Strega Nona Pasta Pot

Updated: Apr 12



Me, making a pasta pot - photo by my papa, Joey Pipia


It’s January second, and I spent today in part figuring out how to instantly (magically) turn a handful of dry pasta into one single long strand of cooked pasta. Sometimes I wish that creating these strange little effects was as simple as they appear onstage, but I know that I would lose the satisfaction that comes from the process; the chase, the diagrams, the pitfalls and little moments of wonder that come from building something from scratch.


Here’s the current state of my pasta-transformation to-do list:  


  • Watch old vids 

  • Read/study diagram and books from dad

  • Order medical tubing

  • Buy spaghetti

  • Hardware store - flat copper 

  • Find screw driver in correct size

  • Remove handles from pasta pot

  • Exchange pasta pot

  • Find big lid [important!!]. Where?? May need to build

  • Take handles off of pasta pot

  • Dish/tray for internal bit - thrift store

  • Contact Steve - re: cutting copper

  • Meet Steve (Friday?). Pot and lid needs to be ready

  • Support piece for inside pot - find/experiment (clear plastic tubing? Or mashable clay stuff for in a bathtub?)

  • Attach flat copper to lid

  • Test inner workings


It’s a funny feeling going from a fully baked show back to the drawing board, and I’m loving the sensation of everything I touch being new, and of course, entirely uncooked. I hope whatever it is that you are working on is bringing you a sparkle of this same kind of joy.

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