Friday, June 1, 2012

Homemade Pasta

There is nothing like the taste of homemade pasta ... and it's easier than you might think!  

Whether you have specific pasta making tools (pasta drying rack, pasta rollers) or not, you can still roll and cut with a pizza cutter or roll the pasta into small balls and smash them with your thumb - I did that for years - no tools needed but your hands!  At any rate, it's lots of fun ... not to mention, super yummy!

Mario Batali's Homemade Pasta
  • 3 1/2 cups all purpose flour, plus a little extra
  • 5 eggs

With the dough hook attachment, mix together eggs and flour on speed 2.  It will take a while for it all to incorporate, but stop every 30 seconds or so and push the flour on the sides down - it speeds up the process.

The dough will be sticky, but that's good!  Knead for about 10 minutes on speed 2.  Flour your hands and remove the dough.  Roll lightly in flour and knead a time or two by hand.

Wrap in plastic wrap and let rest for 30 minutes.  I usually use this time to starting making my sauce (see below for a couple of our favourites).

After the pasta has rested, divide into 4 sections and run through the roller, adjusting the width of the press smaller and smaller until you reach your desired thickness.  Ours is 5 or 6.  Morgan can do most of this on her own ... I'm only there to "help" (and it makes her so proud).  Don't be afraid to cut the sheets of pasta into more manageable sizes.  They can get quite long!

Run the sheets through the cutter of your choice.  We usually choose fettuccine be it's easier to manage.

As you run it through the cutter, hang it by the handfuls on the drying rack.
Bring a large pot of water to rapid boil.  Season water with 2-3 tsp salt.  Add pasta (it will have started to dry out, but that's just fine) and cook for 3-4 minutes to al dente.  Serve with your favourite sauce and enjoy!

Mario Batali's Quick Marinara Sauce
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 medium onion, diced (about 3 tablespoons)
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3 1/2 cups whole, peeled, canned tomatoes in puree (about 1 (28-ounce) can) roughly chopped (I use the tall jar of strained tomatoes and it works great!)
  • Sprig fresh thyme
  • Sprig fresh basil
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Saute the onion and garlic, stirring, until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes and the herb sprigs and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, covered, for 10 minutes.

Remove and discard the herb sprigs. Stir in the salt and season with pepper, to taste. Use now, store covered in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or freeze for up to 2 months.

Tyler Florence's Alfredo Sauce (pictured above, topped and stirred with fresh basil )
    • 1 pint heavy cream
    • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
    • 1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
    • Freshly cracked black pepper
    Heat heavy cream over low-medium heat in a deep saute pan. Add butter and whisk gently to melt. Sprinkle in cheese and stir to incorporate. Season with freshly cracked black pepper.

    No comments:

    Post a Comment