In this charming Italian variant of ""The Wonderful Porridge Pot,"" a witch's helper named Big Anthony shows off to the villagers by commanding his absent mistress' magic kettle to produce pasta. But, as in other versions, Big Anthony hasn't learned the whole formula for turning the pot off, and the town is almost buried in pasta by the time the witch Strega Nons returns. When the men shout ""String him Up!"" Strega Nons has a better idea: ""The punishment must fit the crime. . . . Start eating!"" And so poor disheveled Big Anthony does, consuming all those rolling waves of spaghetti. De Paola's gesticulating people have the air of stuffed puppets, and his glowing little peasant community resembles a folk carver's toy village.