Home made pasta anyone ?

Have you ever tried making pasta ? Like from scratch ? Below are 3 links for recipes. If you are a little curious about my story, just continue reading 🙂

Pasta Dough Recipe

How to make ravioli

Salsa Rosa recipe

I did, twice, and it took a while before I wanted to try again. Why ? Because I was so frustrated the second time. Maybe I should have listened to my landlady who’s Italian and told me she thought making pasta at home was too much of a hassle. But doing it was so much fun that I’m sure I’ll do it again soon ! The pasta making machine is really not expensive, between 20$-50$ and you have a lot of options. Even stand mixers have the tools to make pasta also. What you need also is really affordable (eggs and flour).  And Home made fresh pasta is sooo good, you have to try. And keep in mind that it might go wrong sometimes (like it happened to me!) but that’s not going discourages me to keep trying. Here’s how it went.

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The first time I did pasta, I made ravioli and it was totally great ! I didn’t bother using special flour, I just used the one I had on hand. Of courrse, I didn’t make spaghetti thought that’s what I tried the second time. Here’s the recipe I used (from this website) :

Pasta dough recipe

Ingredients :

  • 2 cups of unbleached flour
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt.

– Place the flour on a table in a mound and make a well in the center. Put the eggs and salt into the well.

– Mix the eggs together with a fork without disturbing the flour.

– Once you have incorporated all of the flour together with the egg using a fork, use your fingertips to blend the mixture together well.

– After the wet and dry ingredients have been combined, bring the mixture together with your hands to form a ball. If the dough seems to dry, add a little more egg mixture. If the mixture is too wet and sticks to your fingers, rub your hands with flour and form the dough into a ball.

– Knead the pasta dough as you would bread dough. Pushing down and away from you with the palm of your hand. Turn the dough ninety degrees, fold the dough over on itself and push down and away again. Continue this until the dough is smooth, about 7 minutes.

– Cut the dough into 3 equal sections. Form each section into a ball. Cover the dough balls with a towel or bowl and let rest for 15 minutes.

– Flatten one of the dough balls with the palm of your hand until it’s about 1/2 an inch thick and no wider than the slot of the pasta machine. With the slot of the pasta machine on its widest setting (usually 1), turn the handle while feeding the dough into the slot. Gently hold the flattened dough as it comes out of the pasta machine, but don’t pull on it.

– After the dough has completely passed through the pasta machine, turn the slot down to the next smallest setting and pass the dough through the slot. Continue to do this, making the slot smaller by one each time. Don’t try to skip a number, as this will only cause the machine to jam and you’ll end up with a mess and no pasta. As you continue rolling the pasta, your sheet of dough will get longer and longer. Try to gently hold the dough as it exits the pasta machine so it doesn’t tear. This is a great time to have an assistant help you. Continue passing the dough through the machine until it’s about an 1/16th of an inch thick.

– After rolling the dough out to the desired thickness, it’s time to cut the dough into pasta. Most pasta machines, come with an adapter that cuts the dough. If you are working on a table, you may wish to cut your dough in half to make it easier to handle. Feed the dough into the cutting blades. Try to have your hand under the center of the cut dough, so you can pick it all up in one bunch. Alternatively, if you don’t have a pasta machine, you can fold the rolled dough into a square. Cut the open end of the square a quarter inch at a time. Immediately, unroll the pasta and lay flat.

– Immediately after cutting the dough, hang the pasta on a dowel or other object (a clothes drying rack works great). You can also lay the pasta flat on a towel, but it is more likely to stick together. The pasta can be used right away or will keep up to a week.

For the stuffing of the ravioli and the ravioli making once the dough is done :

  • goat cheese (depends on the amount you are making but I’d say 1/2 of a cup or more)
  • a garlic clove minced
  • a tablespoon of flat parsley finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste

– I mixed it up and put it between 2 sheets of thin pasta (a little thinner than lasagna pasta). Some machines have the wholes made and you put the pasta around it, I really did it by hand.

– So one sheet down and then little blobs of stuffing at about 2-3 inches appart and I did 3 rows with that dough sheet.

– Then, I put the other sheet on top and really sealed it tight with my hands. I made sure the stuffing was really tight in the ravioli.  I used a little rolling tool to make the crimp on it (most pasta maker will come with it). But really, you can use a round shape item and cut around it, make squares with knives or even a half circle. If they are good, no matter what shape they are will be fine. I just happened to have a tool included in my pasta making box. Here’s what it looks like :

It ended up really good with some salsa rosa sauce

Salsa Rosa sauce recipe :

  • Tomato sauce (either bland in a can or your own marinara sauce)
  • Optional : Diced tomatoes, onions
  • Cream (Heavy, Half and Half, whatever you have on hands)
  • Herbs (Fresh or not you pick the ones you like : Parsley Sage, Rosemary, Thyme and Oregano)
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Unfortunately for me, the second time didn’t go as well. My in-laws were in town and I wanted to impress them with my pasta making. My in-laws like to make their stay as easy as they can so they wanted to buy us dinner but I insisted to cook for them. I had gone to an italian grocery store to buy pasta making flour (which is really really fine, grade 00 it said) prior to their visit . I thought we could do this and have fun while doing it. I guess I thought I had the recipe printed in my head but it ended up either too dry or too wet and crumbly. So we ended up ordering pizza. I wanted to do that so bad, I was so frustrated that it didn’t work ! We had a big laugh out of it and I remembered what my landlady told me about pasta making when I moved it. Next time I’ll follow the recipe to the bone !!!
So go ahead, try it and have fun and tell me all about it !

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