Dinner, Al Dente: Homemade Pasta

I know you’re probably thinking, “You’re crazy!! Homemade pasta? Seriously, you have too much time on your hands”…
Honestly, it’s the opposite- I don’t have enough time on my hands! …. and the crazy thing we’ll leave open to interpretation.

I began making my pasta from scratch in December 2010, shortly after I began making bread. I believe the first time was out of necessity as we were limited to one vehicle at that time and my husband needed to get to and from work. We wanted spaghetti and had no pasta. What did I do? I googled. I came across a few good recipes but eventually landed on my favorite.

If you have flour, salt, eggs and water you can make your own pasta!!! Yes! That’s what people did before they had grocery stores.

Honestly, it’s not that hard. If you enjoy baking you’ll enjoy this.

STEP ONE:
GATHER YOUR INGREDIENTS

Ingredients (makes enough for a family of 5-7 so you can increase or cut the recipe to what you need)

2 cups flour + more for rolling dough

1 tsp salt

2 eggs

1/4 cup water

1/8 cup EVOO

*****This is also when I fill my large stock pot with water, add salt, and bring to a boil. (It takes a while for mine to boil). You can time this on your own. If your pasta is done before your water boils you’ll be fine.

STEP TWO:
Now you don’t need a bowl, you can make your little pile of flour and salt, make your pocket, add your eggs and mix, then add the water and oil… as they do traditionally BUT I prefer to use my mixer. I find it’s easier, quicker and frees up my hands for puppies/kids/phone/dishes/whatever else seems to need my attention when my hands are dirty…. so let me describe how I do it.

Measure your 2 cups of flour, add your 1 tsp of salt, mix. create a pocket in the flour (a little valley in the middle). Place your eggs in the pocket.

Now mix on lowest setting. Don’t rush this process as it’s very important. Let the eggs slowly pull in the flour. Eventually you’ll need to help the process along by carefully pushing down some flour to be mixed. Repeat until it’s all mixed. Let mixer knead the dough on step one or two for about a minute. Turn off, remove dough.

STEP THREE:
Now place dough on a lightly floured surface and sprinkle with flour. Grab your rolling pin, rub some flour on it and let’s get down to business.

The best way I’ve found to roll pasta dough is to begin with your rolling pin in the middle and work your way out gently, while applying pressure. Do this on every side of your dough. Next, take the rolling pin and beginning at the end nearest you, push down on the dough to flatten. Lift up a corner of the rolling pin, move forward slightly, lower rolling pin and flatten dough. Now do the same on the other side, lifting and moving pin forward slightly, lower and flatten. Repeat this all the way across the dough.

Next, roll the dough starting in the middle and working your way out to each side. Add more flour below dough or on dough or rolling pin as needed. If your dough is breaking and cracking it’s a little too dry and if it’s too sticky it’s a little too wet. A good dough is smooth, malleable and doen’t break. If that’s not what you’re working with never fear! I’ve had my share of less than stellar doughs. It’ll be fine.

As you can see the dough rolls nicely. I like to turn my dough on my counter every so often to make sure it’s even.

And When you’ve got it as thin as you want it, you’re all set.

STEP FOUR:
Now.. some of you have a pasta roller / cutter / attachment for your mixer. That’s great and you can edit these steps accordingly. I don’t have any stuff like that… I’d love to but for now I cut my own pasta. This is the interesting part. I just take a pizza cutter and cut the pasta. *
My best adivce* be sure to roll and cut it as thin as you can, because pasta thickens as it boils. This is how much pasta you will have from this recipe.

As soon as your water boils, add your pasta. Fresh pasta doesn’t seem to take as long as dry pasta to boil, so watch it. Mine typically is al dente in 3-5 minutes.

Drain! Voila!

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