Every day on Twitter holds a lesson, and this week one of those lessons was about cooking pasta in cold water. It all began when user drive45music posted about how his girlfriend snapped back at him after he criticized her pasta-cooking method. When she added the pasta to the water, he pointed out that it should be boiling before she did so. In return, she told him, “Literally all men are the same.”
While many people jumped in to support him, a few people who knew a bit more about the science behind cooking pasta tagged in J. Kenji Alt-Lopez, the man behind The Food Lab. Kenji, being both a science-driven food writer and a feminist, gave the appropriate answer: “Usually when you get called out for mansplaining you don’t double down and mock your significant other in public. She’s also right about everything.”
And then the fury of the internet unleashed upon the original poster, Kenji, and everyone else that dared enter the fray — which included Alton Brown, who was also in support of the girlfriend.
The original post has almost 1,500 replies, 27,000 replies, and 265,000 likes. The original poster has since made jokes about how bad his day will be today — which he just learned is National Pasta Day. And Kenji has since posted that he will no longer be reading Twitter replies. It turns out, refuting a long-accepted way of cooking pasta and calling out mansplaining in a single tweet is a siren song to the worst of the internet.
But the lesson in the incident is that the girlfriend is right, as Kenji has proven over and over, since he first wrote about it almost a decade ago, and as Alton Brown has shown us on his show and on the internet. The experts all agree: standard grocery-store dried pasta cooked from cold water will turn out no differently than when cooked in boiling water.
Read more: Alton Brown’s Weird Trick for Cooking Pasta Actually Works
The other lesson? Maybe don’t call out your partner in public, even if you were going to be right.
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