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Homemade Pasta Recipe

Prep Time:

15 Minutes

Cook Time:

10 Minutes

Serves:

4 Servings

Level:

About the Recipe

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Ingredients


⅔ c. all-purpose flour 

⅛ t. salt

1 T. Olive Oil

1 egg

Preparation

Picturing an Italian grandmother as she rolls out the dough, kneads, cuts and shapes it, effortlessly and quickly - a procedure done so many times that her hands move too fast to see how she twirls and twists the dough into those intriguing shapes.  Then savor the freshly made pasta in a freshly cooked sauce, whose tantalizing fragrance filled the kitchen as it simmered on the stove.  Nothing will ever taste as good again!

- Antonia Rossi, Secrets of Italian Cooking 


I have spent the past ten years learning to prepare sauces and pasta to rejuvenate passion felt as a child visiting my grandmother, in her kitchen.  I have never tasted the special touch in any Italian restaurants or recipes until my brother Patrick and I ate dinner at a small Trattoria in Pitigliano, Italy where miraculously, the same smells, tastes, and sentiments from her kitchen in Hershey came alive.  


Making Homemade Pasta


Making pasta at home is so simple and very versatile.  First master making an egg pasta which is made from flour, eggs, salt and a little olive oil.  


The formula to making good pasta is knowing the proportions.  This makes 1-2 servings depending on whether it is a first dish or your main course. 


⅔ c. all-purpose flour 

⅛ t. salt

1 T. Olive Oil

1 egg


Pour the flour onto a clean work surface into a mound.  Form a well in the center of your mound with a spoon or fork.  Crack the amount of eggs you will be using into the well.  Mix the eggs together with a fork.  Add salt and olive oil to the eggs.  Begin incorporating flour into the egg mixture with your fork.  Once the mixture gets lumpy and can no longer be mixed with a fork.  Begin incorporating the ingredients and kneading with the palm of your hands.  Knead the dough until it is smooth and soft for 12-15 minutes.  


Roll out with a rolling pin into sheets.  Cut for a pasta machine or roll into thin sheets for ravioli, tagalettelle or linguini.  


Let the dough sit for 30 minutes so it can rest and spring back to life after kneading.  If you want to prepare the pasta ahead of time, lightly flour a clean kitchen towel and lay the pasta on the towel. Cook the pasta within 2 hours for best results.  You can wrap and keep the pasta in a refrigerator for up to 2-3 days.  


After you become quite confident in making homemade pasta, experiment with adding herbs, spinach, tomato paste to your dough to try different flavors and textures.  


Making a delectable sauce stems more from practice, the freshest ingredients, and taste.  This begins with nothing but the freshest ingredients.  Preferably direct from the herb garden or market.  I have found perfectly ripe, large, homegrown tomatoes to be as sweet and flavorful as a plum tomato.  Fresh garlic, yellow onion or shallots, and whatever your tastes desire: fresh mushrooms (porcini, portobello, or shiitake), freshly ground veal (fantastic in a Strasticate sauce with a touch of cream), tuna, scallops, shrimp, calamari, hot sausage, prosciutto, herbs, sun-dried tomatoes.  A wonderful pasta dish I tasted while working at Germano’s Restaurant in Baltimore, Maryland is Penne Nanna, tender pieces of duck in a tomato-chianti sauce.  As the possibilities for delicious sauces are infinite, so too are the fabulous variations, shapes, and flavors of pasta.  This is far from a comprehensive collection of pasta recipes and sauces that are available to you as a cook. Learn to make homemade pasta, a basic tomato sauce; then like my grandmother experiment add ingredients that are fresh and in season. 

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