I’ve always wanted to make homemade pasta dough, another item on my Recipe Bucket list! So when my sister-n-law and brother got me the Kitchen Aid Pasta maker for my birthday this year, I no longer had an excuse to cross homemade pasta dough off my Recipe bucket list!
When I was in Sicily on vacation with my family, we ate at this little farmhouse that served homemade fettuccine. It was one of my favorite meals of our trip. Your teeth just sink into the pasta, it has such a delicious, fresh, chewy, unmistakable bite to it.
First off, the pasta dough itself is a breeze to make. If you happen to own a food processor, the dough can be prepped in less than 5 minutes. (Or you can make it by hand or in a stand mixer in less than 15 minutes.) The process of rolling out the noodles is also easier than I thought, especially once I got the hang of using my pasta maker. (I’ve included instructions below as well, for how to roll out pasta using a rolling pin by hand.) I’ve also enjoyed experimenting with the various different pasta flours and discovering which ones I like best for different occasions. (Short answer — I prefer “00” flour, and Semolina Flour is a good choice for heartier shapes and sizes, either one can be found at any Italian market or Amazon).
While practicing the Safer-at-Home order, I decided this was the perfect time to share everything I’ve learned so far about making homemade pasta. I’ve tried to include a lot of different methods and options to work with whatever you have in your kitchen. So, find whatever method works best for you — and comment below if you give homemade pasta a try! I would love to hear how it goes.
3 cups of “00” flour, plus additional for dusting
1 teaspoon kosher or fine sea salt
3 large eggs
1 egg yolk
Approximately 2 tablespoons warm water
1 to 1/2 tablespoons EVOO – Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Food Processor Method
This method is the quickest and easiest, in my opinion.
Simply add all ingredients to the bowl of a food processor (fitted with the normal blade attachment). Pulse for about 10 seconds, or until the mixture reaches a crumbly texture. Remove the dough and pat it into a ball with your hands and place it on a lightly-floured cutting board. Knead the dough for 1-2 minutes until it is smooth and elastic. (If the dough seems wet or sticky, just add in some extra flour. You want it to be pretty dry.) Form the dough into a ball with your hands, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and let the dough rest at room temperature for 30 minutes. Use immediately or refrigerate for up to 1 day.
Pasta By Hand
This is the traditional way. I actually love making pasta by hand, especially with kids, it’s like playdough that’s actually edible!
Place the flour in a mound on a large cutting board. Then use your fingers or a spoon to create a good-sized well in the middle of the flour mound (kind of like a volcano). Add the eggs in the center of the well. Sprinkle the salt and drizzle the olive oil on top of the eggs. Use a fork to begin whisking the eggs. Then once they are combined, begin gradually whisking some of the surrounding flour into the egg mixture, adding more and more until the egg mixture is nice and thick (some eggs may accidentally spill out, no worries, just use your hands to pull them back in.) Then use your hands to fold the rest of the dough all together until combined. Knead the dough for about 10 minutes or until the dough is smooth and elastic, sprinkle some extra flour on the cutting board if needed to prevent sticking or if the dough seems too wet or sticky. This can definitely count as your arm workout for the day! Form the dough into a ball with your hands, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and let the dough rest at room temperature for 30 minutes. Use immediately or refrigerate for up to 1 day.
Now for the rolling!
Thanks to my sister-in-law and brother I have the roller attachments for the Kitchenmaid mixer. But it is okay, if you don’t, a rolling pin works just as well.
Once the dough has rested for 30 minutes and is ready to go, remove it from the plastic wrap and transfer it to a cutting board. Use a knife to cut the dough into four equal wedges, then set one wedge aside and immediately wrap the remaining three in the plastic wrap again to prevent them from drying out.
Roll by hand
To roll out your pasta by hand, shape one wedge into an oval-shaped flat disc. Transfer the disc to a cutting board, and use a rolling pin to roll out the dough until it reaches your desired level of thickness (generally between 1-2mm thick), adding extra flour to the cutting board as needed to prevent sticking. My thickness rule is, if you gently pick the dough up you can slightly see your hand through it.
Using a pizza cutter or a knife, slice the dough into 5-inch sections. Then, starting on the short side of the sections, roll them up into very loose, flat cylinders. Cut the cylinders to your desired width of noodles. Then transfer the cut pasta to a drying rack, or swirl it into little pasta “nests” and lay them on a floured pan to dry for 30 minutes. Repeat with the remaining pasta dough.
Roll with Stand Mixer attachments
Connect the pasta roller attachment to your stand-alone mixer. Set the adjustment knob to the widest setting. Then shape and feed the pasta dough into the roller until it reaches your desired thinness.
Remove the roller attachment and connect the cutter attachment of your choice. Feed the dough through the cutter. Then transfer the cut pasta to a drying rack, to dry for 30 minutes. Repeat with the remaining pasta dough.
Ready to cook
Bring a large stockpot of salted water to a rolling boil over high heat. Add in the fresh pasta, and then immediately begin to stir it so that the noodles do not stick together. Continue to cook until the pasta has reached the texture you desire, I personally like al dente , which usually takes 90 seconds. Homemade pasta cooks much faster than dried pasta! Then strain the fresh pasta and use immediately.
Homemade Pasta is something everyone should make at least once in their lifetime! It is pretty easy and fun! Plus you can be creative with your flavors, from a lemon herb to chocolate- the possibilities are endless.
Coming soon! Check out the recipes tab for different ways to use homemade pasta! For ravioli, check out my Pear & Pecorino Ravioli with Pancetta recipe.
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