A bowl of alphabet soup
Alphabet pasta, also referred to as Alfabeto, is pasta that has been mechanically cut or pressed into the letters of an alphabet. It is often served in an alphabet soup, sold in a can of condensed broth. Another variation, Alphaghetti, consists of letter-shaped pasta in a marinara or spaghetti sauce.
It is not clear who invented the alphabet soup but Knorr sold it in Europe already in the 1910s. One common American brand of condensed-style alphabet soup is Campbell's. This soup, like its competitors', is marketed towards parents for its educational value.
A similar product, Alphabetti Spaghetti, was sold by the H. J. Heinz Company for 60 years before being discontinued in 1990. Like Campbell's alphabet soup, it contains alphabet pasta canned in tomato sauce, but no cheese. It was later reintroduced by Heinz in 2005.
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- Pasta shapes - An illustrated guide at Food-Info.net
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