I love pasta. I love the warm noodles, paired with the tangy red marinara sauce, topped with salty parmesan cheese. It’s easy for me to pull out some boxed spaghetti, throw it into some boiling water for 10-11 minutes, pour some Prego sauce on it, and have myself a meal. But sometimes, it’s nice to take the time to make fresh pasta and sauce.
Tonight, my dad and I prepared a full, fresh Italian feast.
We started by making the fresh pasta dough.
First, gather your ingredients. You will need:
- 2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
- 2 Medium Eggs
- 1 cup of Italian “00” Flour
- 2/3 cup Semolina Flour
You will first want to combine both of the flours in a medium bowl. Then, make a well in the center of the dry mixture and crack in the two eggs. Carefully whisk the eggs in the well without incorporating too much of the dry mixture yet. Then, add the olive oil into the well with the eggs and mix with the eggs. Finally, combine the dry and wet mixtures together by carefully folding the dry mixture into the wet mixture using your hands. Combine until smooth, as shown in the picture above. If needed, add small drops of water to soften the dough. Remember, the dough should be combined, but not sticky.
Next, cover your dough with a moist paper towel and let it sit for at least a half hour. By keeping it covered like this, you keep the dough from drying out and cracking because you are surrounding it with a moist environment (from the water on the towel).
After the dough rests for a sufficient amount of time, you will need to break off parts of the dough and roll them with either a rolling pin or just pressing it down with your hands. Then, one at a time, insert the rolled out pieces of dough into the pasta roller (mine is an attachment from KitchenAid).
Don’t be discouraged if the pasta dough comes out like this on the first roll through the pasta maker! It happened to me several times and it just means you either need to slow down how fast you are rolling it through the machine, or widen up the setting (#1 is the widest setting) on the pasta maker!
Eventually, your dough should start to come out like this, and roll out thinner and thinner as you increase the setting on the round dial (on the very right side of the pasta roller in this picture). You can stop rolling the dough when the pasta sheets are about twice as thick as your fingernail (or before the dough begins to rip).
Once you are finished rolling the sheets, attach the spaghetti attachment and beautifully thin noodles should fall out!
Next, add the spaghetti to a large pot of boiling water. Also, add in about a handful or two of salt for taste. The great thing about this fresh pasta is that it only needs to cook for 2 minutes!
Finally, to complete this perfect Italian meal, we made some simple garlic toast. All we did was spread butter, minced garlic, and shredded cheese on sliced pieces of a baguette, and then toast and broil it in a toaster over for 5-6 minutes until the cheese bubbled and the toast began to brown. The garlic toast was perfect to dip into the sauce leftover after finishing your pasta serving!