You can, but I wouldn’t advise it. I tend to stick to traditional combinations of shape and sauce. The Italians have been at this business for a very long time (long before Marco Polo) and have most aspects completely covered, including what constitutes the best combinations. When pasta is drained a certain amount of water clings to it, and some shapes retain more water than others. When this pasta is sauced the water combines, extends and in some cases emulsifies the sauce. A different shape would retain a different amount of water and produce a different taste.
© 1996 Alastair Little. All rights reserved.