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Pasta, why buy it when you can make it

Last week I made spaghetti and meatballs. The meatballs were already made up and in my freezer. So all I had to do was thaw and bake them. The same thing with my sauce. It was already made up and in the freezer, needing only to be re-warmed. Since I had so much time on my hands I decided to make the bread and the noodles.

I won't go into the recipe for the bread but I did make a roasted garlic spread you may like. I took one whole head of garlic, roasted. Removed all the flesh and mashed it up with a pinch of salt and 1 tablespoon each of extra virgin olive oil, melted butter and grated Parmesan cheese. Spreading this onto the homemade bread was simply heavenly. Give it a try.

On to the noodles. The first time I made pasta was in culinary school, in Florence Italy. It turned out pretty good, I’m sure I got an A! Here's the recipe:

PastaServes 2

100 grams all-purpose flour, approximately 3/4 cup1 egg pinch of salt water as needed

On a clean and sanitized countertop make a mound of your flour with a hole in the center. Add your egg and salt and begin to mix with your fingers or a fork from the inside working out. As the dough begins to form you may need a couple of tablespoons of water, added a little at a time. Keep working the dough until you have a stiff, yet smooth consistency.

Allow dough to rest for up to 30 minutes, covered with plastic wrap. Divide into quarters and roll out to about an eighth inch thickness. Cut long, thin strips with a pizza cutter. Be sure to dust with flour as you work the dough to keep it from sticking to your countertop or equipment.

I have a stand mixer with pasta attachments and so the rolling and cutting is much easier and more consistent.

While you're working on the dough you can bring a large pot of very lightly salted water to a rolling boil. When you're pasta is rolled and cut add it to the water and stir. While it's cooking give an occasional stir to keep it moving. Once the pasta floats to the top, simmer for about one more minute and then drain. The pasta should be cooked al dente, still a little firm to the bite.

You may immediately toss the pasta with a little extra virgin olive oil or melted butter. That's all you need, this will be simply delicious.

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