Cannelloni is used differently than most other types of pasta. The cylinders are typically stuffed and then the pasta is covered with a sauce and baked. Some types of cannelloni do need to be boiled first, while other types can be filled and baked while the pasta is uncooked. A typical approach is a meat-based filling combined with a bolognaise sauce, but there are many different variations. Another common approach is a spinach and cheese filling, which can be a good option for vegetarians.
Elbow macaroni is one of the more common types of pasta and this one is especially common in macaroni cheese. Typically the elbows are relatively small, so they don’t work well with highly textured sauces. However, they are a good match for creamy sauces, as anyone who has tried really good macaroni cheese can probably attest.
Fettuccine is probably the most common type of flat ribbon pasta and it is a particularly popular one. This is another type of pasta that is commonly found fresh or dried. When fresh, cooking the pasta is very fast, and it has a texture that works well with creamy sauces. If you are including vegetables in a dish with fettuccine, one good trick is to cut them lengthwise. This makes the dish blend better and also makes it easier to eat.
Fusilli is another type of corkscrewed pasta. It tends to have a looser spiral than rotini, although at a glance the two pasta types can look similar. Like other shaped pasta, fusilli works well in textured sauces and isn’t a good match for sauces without much substance. If you have a thick sauce, it will tend to stick well to the pasta, making for a pleasant mouthful. In contrast, a thin sauce will often slight off this type of pasta.
Lasagna has the unfortunate luck of being the name of a dish as well as a type of pasta. The pasta tends to be wide and flat, and the dish is made from the pasta layered with other ingredients, including (but not limited to) meat, béchamel and tomato sauce. The pasta can be found as fresh sheets as well as the more common dried sheets. In some cases the edges of the sheet may also be curled.