"The pasta is the food."
Translation:De pasta is het eten.
Pasta is a de-word while eten is a het-word, so you'll always say de pasta instead of het pasta. Sadly, grammatical gender is just something you have to memorize in Dutch. There aren't usually any endings that tell whether to use de or het (sometimes there are), but with enough practice it'll come naturally enough.
It's very common for the same word to be a noun and verb in English too. Compare the following: I swim (v) every day. I go for a swim (n). I am running (v). Running (n) is fun. I need (v) sleep. I have a need (n) for speed. I speed (v) to work. His speed (n) was excessive.