Italians have a deep history with pasta and they have created a wide variety of pasta recipes. As a beginner, you might have a tough time selecting the right recipe to try out. Worry no more as we will prepare fresh egg pasta, a recipe that you can try out this weekend. The step by step procedure highlighted in this recipe will ensure that you amaze others with your Italian culinary skills and it takes a relatively short time to prepare.
We will be making fresh pasta from scratch and you can serve with your favorite sauce.
Add salt to the flour– The flour should be in the mixing bowl. You can start by adding two and a half cups of flour into the mixing bowl.
Add the eggs – Crack the eggs and add them into the flour. To make mixing easier, ensure that you break the eggs at the center of the flour.
Begin mixing the eggs with the flour — You can use the whisk to mix eggs to the flour. Continue mixing until the mixture looks slurry. Do not rush while mixing the two together as you will waste your flour. Stop mixing after it forms a soft dough. Adding warm water will take care of any leftover flour in the bowl. Ensure that you still have some flour left as it will harden the flour.
Kneading the dough — Begin kneading the pasta with your bare hands as using the whisk is ineffective. Apply some cooking oil or margarine on your hands will prevent the dough from sticking to your hands while kneading. Flatten and fold the dough till it hardens and forms a ball. Avoid trapping air bubbles as you do this.
If you suspect that you some air bubbles are trapped knead some more. Don’t worry about kneading if its your first time, you will get the hang of it. Sometimes as we add flour and it sticks to the bowl and you can a very small portion of water to get rid of this problem. If you add a lot of water your dough will become slurry again. Adding more flour will increase the number of servings one can make. A slicing knife comes in handy in letting trapped air escape and cut the dough into smaller portions.
Let the dough cool — Place the dough in a plastic container and let it cool down. Alternatively, you can wrap it in an aluminum foil. Clean the mixing bowl after you have transferred the dough into the plastic container. Let it rest for 30 minutes and keep the container sealed.During this break, you can prepare the sauce for the freshly made pasta.
Dividing the pasta into smaller portions — Take the dough out of the container and sprinkle some flour on it.
Some dough might be still stuck in the container. Scrape the dough from the bottom of the container using a spoon or a spatula. We are avoiding wastage of the dough and sprinkling flour dust does the trick. Place the dough on a surface and cut the dough into four smaller portions. Ensure that the smaller portions are fist -sized which are easy to roll. Apply flour on the rolling surface to prevent the dough from sticking to it.
Rolling the dough — Your pasta machine settings should guide you on how wide you roll the dough. If you don’t have a rolling pin, can use a clean glass bottle as a substitute. Flatten the dough using a rolling pin by rolling it up and down twice and then rotate the dough so as to get a flat disk -like shape. Use the rolling pin to get control the thickness of the dough. For ease of cooking your dough shouldn’t be that thick. If your flat dough exceeds the wideness settings of the pasta maker, you can use a knife to cut the edges. Use your hands to feel the texture of the dough and ensure that it is soft.
Thinning the pasta — Thick pasta takes a longer time to cook and is a chef’s nightmare. If you are not satisfied with the thickness of the pasta you can use the rolling pin to flatten the dough some more. Flatten it to your optimum thickness and the width of the pasta should be around 12 -inches. Each pasta cutting tool has its desirable settings and the thickness is highlighted in the instructions. Lay the dough on the pasta cutting board and cut it into two halves.
Cutting the pasta using a pasta machine — Mount the pasta into your pasta cutting tool. Feed the pasta into the pasta machine as it cuts the dough into noodles, lasagna or spaghetti. Ensure that all pasta are of the same thickness. A basket is placed at the other end to collect the cut pasta. Repeat this procedure with each portion. Some pasta machines come with readily installed rolling pins and we can use our dough portions as they are.
Cooking the pasta — Cook the pasta immediately. Add 2-3 cups of water to a large pot and a slight pinch of salt. Allow the water to boil and then proceed to add the pasta into the pot. Let the pasta boil for 4-5 minutes and then sieve the hot water. Others opt to dry or freeze the pasta for later use which is still a great idea.
Serve your pasta with you favorite sauce and salad. This entire process will only take an hour and is easy to follow.
You can add various spices to the dough and get varying flavors. Preparing pasta is easy and within no time you will have gained expertise in making your own pasta dishes. Avoid serving pasta with large chunks of meat in the sauce as they are tough to eat. Various sauce recipes are available and minced meat is your best bet when making sauce for the first time. Remember to enjoy yourself and be creative with the recipe.
Make fresh pasta is very simple and the result of better flavor than industrial versions. It is an activity that can be enjoyed together with friends or family, around the stove. It is also a very appropriate way to encourage children in the kitchen to allow them to participate in the process. Continue reading
Serves/Makes: 4 servings
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