I have only heard the French refer to "pasta" as "pasta". "Pate" meaning paste or dough.
your French panel does not seem to be very representative...
This is very hard but great practice!
How to know if the sentence means pates and not pate?
"les pâtes", always in plural, translate "pasta"
"la pâte" = dough
Why must I use "de" before pate?