Update and Redux: J – Making your own pasta is so rewarding. Not all that hard, either. Luke showed is how and it took Christina right back to her childhood, making pasta with her brothers. Took me back to nowhere … I had never made fresh pasta. Good thing I finally checked that box.
C – It has been awhile since my brothers and I made homemade pasta.
It might be a good 18 years ago. WOW, I sound old … OK, lets make me sound less old. I think I was 10 years old the last time we made pasta … that’s sounds much better. I almost had a midlife crisis here for a second. Phew!
I hated making pasta when I was growing up. It tasted good and all. But, we never seemed to make enough. My mom would ask the three of us to make pasta once a year. We dreaded it. It was an all day event. Mixing the flour, waiting for the flour to be ready, rolling out the dough over and over and over again. Finally cutting it up into small noodle strands.
We made about twenty pounds of noodles in one day. We only got to eat a pound or two of it. We have a big family and my parents would always want to give the noodles away to our family and friends. We were just a bit bitter about it, but we didn’t have any control. We all knew we did a good deed giving it all away. Since then, that old pasta maker has been sitting in the box collecting dust. I am kind of glad. I am even more glad that I found a great pasta company in Sacramento that makes affordable fresh pasta when I want it.
So back to the present moment. Luke got excited after making gnocchi for us last week and suggested we make Paparadelle. I agreed, of course, not knowing what Paparadelle was. They were super-wide noodles. HOMEMADE NOODLES!
When Luke showed up with a pasta maker in hand, all my memories of making noodles with my brothers came to me. Oh no, this is going to take forever. But, I forgot who I was dealing with for a second. Then, I remember. I’m dealing with Luke. A professional chef that has to do everything extremely fast. This will be quick. Or, maybe not. We had did everything by hand just like when I was making noodles with my brothers.
Using the Well Method to incorporate the flour and the eggs together. Before rolling out, we put it in the refrigerator for a bit to make the gluten to come together. Then, the nightmare happened. The dreaded pasta maker. Luckily, Luke only made a small batch.
Thank goodness we didn’t have to deal with twenty pounds of noodles. He rolled the dough thinner and thinner until is was ready to cut. His professional cutting by hand was so precise. It was really cool and, of course, he made it look so easy. We rolled out a couple of other styles, just for fun.
The noodles were done. They cooked really quickly. We had them with a sauce we made that really highlighted the noodles.
Nice fresh noodles. What more can you ask for?
|How To Make Pasta|
- 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for working with the dough
- 2 to 3 eggs, as needed for body
- Fresh ground black pepper
- Kosher salt
- Place 2 cups of flour on the counter top. Make a well in the middle of the flour.
- Add eggs into well. Using two or three fingers, incorporate eggs slowly by adding flour from the sides of the well into eggs.
- Bring in flour into dough until dough is formed. Add another egg if needed. We cracked opened the last egg into a bowl first and beat it. Then, we add just a little at a time until the dough was well incorporated.
- Form dough into a ball.
- Add black pepper and salt. Mix well. Add a bit of water in your hand and knead into dough, so the dough is not extremely dense.
- Let rest a bit, then wrap in plastic wrap. Place in the refrigerator for at least an hour or overnight (Recommended: Leaving overnight will allow dough to be less stretchy and easier to work with.)
- When ready to make pasta. Bring dough back to room temperature.
- Sprinkle working surface with flour.
- Flatten dough and cut into manageable pieces.
- Make dough as square as possible. This allows dough to run through pasta maker evenly and also creates less waste.
- Roll dough in pasta maker. Moving from the largest size setting to the smallest. If the dough starts getting too long, cut in half and continue.
- When tehdough is a desired thickness, cut dough into noodles by hand or use the cutting attachment on the pasta maker.
- Once finished cutting, sprinkle flour on top so it doesn’t dry out.
- In a large 10 quart pot. Boil water and add a generous amount of salt. Throw in pasta and cook for 4 minutes or until pasta is just tender.
- Drain and do not rinse.
- Use immediately.
Thanks Luke for bring back old memories of my childhood, but changing my perspective. I don’t have to make a lot of noodles. It doesn’t have to be such a daunting task. I just have to take it one step at a time. It was actually fun and I might have to do it again. Maybe even twenty pounds worth.
Just don’t count on it too much. That fresh-made noodle shop is right around the corner.