This basic pasta dough recipe was adapted from Alice Waters. The recipe appeared in The Art of Simple Food: Notes, Lessons, and Recipes from a Delicious Revolution, a fabulous book on learning how to eat simply. Can you think of a better person to learn how to make fresh pasta from? I highly recommend this book.
Prep Time 25minutes
Cook Time 5minutes
Total Time 30minutes
Author Adapter from Alice Waters
1cupsemolina or durum flour
First, mix everything together. This takes literally two minutes and almost no effort. Add flours to the bowl of a mixer, hook on the paddle attachment, and turn your mixer to low speed. Slowly pour in the eggs and beat until crumbly, adding a little water if you need to (wetter pasta dough is easier to work with than dry dough). If you don't have a mixer, you can mix the dough in a large bowl, using a fork to start combining the flour and eggs. Finish the dough by mixing with your hands once the mixture is too clumpy for the fork.
Form the dough into a flat disk, wrap it in plastic wrap, and set it in the refrigerator for 2 hours so that the gluten can relax.
Once it has rested, flatten the disk with your hands so that it is 1-inch thick and sprinkle with a little flour on both sides. Run the dough through the pasta machine with the flat rollers set to their most open setting; fold the dough sheet into thirds, like a letter, and roll it back through the pasta maker again. If the dough sticks, coat with a little more flour. Fold and roll the dough three more times on this setting, which kneads it to produce a silky texture.
Now it's time to stretch your pasta dough. Keep running the dough through the flat pasta rollers, closing the gap between the rollers one stop every time you roll your pasta through. Use your free hand to guide the pasta as it comes out the bottom of the pasta machine, folding the sheet of dough back over itself to prevent it from piling into a lump that may stick to itself. If your dough begins to stick, sprinkle lightly with more flour. I usually stop at setting 3 or 4, for I find that thinner pasta breaks easily and doesn't have the same hearty mouthfeel that you get with a little extra noodle thickness.
To cut the noodles into strips, change the attachment on the pasta machine to whichever cutting attachment you prefer, then roll the pasta sheet through the machine. Otherwise, you can also cut the flat sheets of pasta into thin strips by hand, using a long, sharp knife.
Once the noodles are cut, hang them to dry over a pasta hanger (we just used the back of a chair, draped with parchment). Make sure the noodles aren't touching one another, lest they stick together. Let the pasta dry for 20 minutes or until you're ready to cook them.
If you want to refrigerate or freeze the pasta, you can spread the noodles on a piece of parchment and store them in a sealed bag.
Now the fun part - eating! Fill a large pot of water and set it to boil. Once it's at a good, rolling boil, add 3 tablespoons of salt and heat for another 3 minutes to bring it back to a boil. Add the noodles and stir frequently to ensure the noodles don't stick together. Cook for 3-6 minutes, or until the pasta has a good bite without tasting of raw flour. Strain through a colander and serve immediately.