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Pasta with pesto.jpg
Cavatappi served with pesto sauce
Alternative names Cellentani, serpentini, trivelle, stortelli, spirali, double elbows, amori
Type Pasta
Place of origin Italy
Cookbook: Cavatappi  Media: Cavatappi

Cavatappi [kavaˈtappi] is macaroni formed in a helical tube shape. It is the Italian word for corkscrew. It is known by other names, including cellentani, amori, spirali, tortiglioni, fusilli rigati, or scoobi doo.[1] It is usually scored with lines or ridges (rigati in Italian) on the surface.


Cavatappi is an Italian word created by compounding "cava tappi", which literally means "tap extractor" (a corkscrew). It is also known as amori, serpentini, trivelle, stortelli.


The cavatappi shape is perhaps best described as a ridged tube extruded into a helix shape though a small number of rotations. The number of turns is commonly in the range of 1–3[citation needed] (with fewer than one full turn, the shape degenerates into a twisted version of elbow macaroni).

While the word "spiral" is often used colloquially to describe helical objects (such as a spiral staircase), in mathematics a spiral is considered to be a curve on the plane of progressive radius, and the name "helix" is preferred for a curve inscribed on a cylinder, such as that of DNA's double helix. The notion of a screw as a helical surface dates back to the time of Archimedes.

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