Welcome to Homemade Pasta 101. Prior to starting my journey to remove processed food from our diet, I never gave a thought to making my own pasta. Whenever I saw a TV chef making pasta, I always thought it to be too difficult to even attempt. That's until I took a pasta making class at Sur La Table and I witnessed first hand just how easy it was. Now I will say, I think it's easy because I let my Kitchen Aid do the work. Making and kneading the dough can be done by hand, albeit with more effort. However, you will need some piece of equipment that will roll the pasta. Prior to getting my mixer, I had an old fashioned hand crank that attached to the counter. It was a slight challenge to manipulate the machine and hold the pasta, therefore I did enlist the help of my hubby. Then I discovered what the Kitchen Aid can do, ie. mixing, kneading, and with the help of the pasta attachment, rolling and cutting the dough into fettuccine or linguine (FYI, my next attachment should be here any day now, where I will be able to make spaghetti, rigatoni, and fusilli among others.. I think I am a little too excited about this). Since discovering what my mixer can do, I have never looked back.
If you are on the fence at all about making homemade pasta, I must tell you, the flavor is better than you can possibly imagine. Not to mention, the linguine I made for dinner tonight, took less than a minute to cook. I mean, really? Plus it can totally be made ahead of time. You can leave it wrapped, in the fridge, for 2-3 days. You can cut it into whatever shape you want, toss with some flour, let dry, and then freeze it. The possibilities are endless. So let me stop rambling and share with you my tried and true pasta recipe.
Homemade Pasta: (ingredients pictured above)
1 1/2 cups semolina flour
2 large organic eggs, beaten
2 tbsp organic olive oil
2 tbsp water
1/2 tsp salt
The tools you will need: (if using a stand mixer)
-The paddle and dough hook attachments
-Pasta roller attachment (if you have it)
-Another pasta roller- This is an essential tool for homemade pasta making.. sorry!!
-Pasta cutter attachment- Good news, this isn't essential. The pasta can be cut with a knife or a pizza cutter, but having the attachment is nice. It takes about 1 minute to cut the pasta into the whatever shape I want using the attachment.
Directions: Add all the ingredients to the bowl of your mixer. Using the paddle attachment, mix the ingredients well until the bowl starts to take the shape of a ball (2nd picture). When it comes together is the point I take out the paddle attachment and add the dough hook. Now it's just a matter of letting the mixer do it's thing. I let it go on medium for 8-10 minutes. Just set a timer and walk away if you want. When the time is up, the dough should be very smooth. Your bowl should be clean (as the 3rd picture shows). Turn the ball into a disc, wrap it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, but up to 3 days if you really want to.
So that's it, my basic pasta recipe. My next mission is to experiment with flavored pasta. I really want to try sweet potato pasta tossed in a sage butter sauce or spinach pasta tossed in a roasted garlic cream sauce. Sounds yummy. Looks like I have some work to do. And you can believe, once I figure out those recipes, I will be sharing them with all of you.