The most important thing when cooking anything from scratch, including pasta, is to use ingredients of high quality. The better quality you choose for your ingredients, the better the resulting pasta will be! So please, buy a good organic flour and organic eggs and use good quality sea or kosher salt - it will pay out big time in the result!
How to Make Pasta from Scratch
Making fresh pasta from scratch ain't no rocket science! I show you how - video included!
Fresh Homemade Pasta
Prep time 15 min - Total time 80 min
Ingredients for 2 servings
12oz (350g) strong plain white flour • 3 fresh eggs • salt
Making the Pasta Dough
Put the flour on your work surface or in a bowl, if you prefer so, and make a hollow in the middle, beat the egg, adding a little salt, with a fork and put the mixture in the hollow. Use your hands to knead all together until it becomes a smooth dough. Alternatively you can use a mixer/ food processor using the kneading hooks at lowest speed. Knead the dough for at least 10min until it is smooth and silky.
Rolling and cutting your pasta
Pasta machine or not?
You can use a pasta machine to roll out and cut your pasta, in this case just follow the guide book provided with your machine or you can roll the pasta the old-fashioned way with a dough roller (I prefer the wooden ones) until it is as thin as you want it and cut it in the desired shape. Put the cut pasta on a clean tea towel and let it dry for at least one hour before cooking. Hint: Don't try to roll all the dough at ones, divide it in small, more manageable, portions.
Cooking your fresh
Cooking your pasta the italian way!
For each 100g (4oz) of pasta you will need one litre of water and a pinch of salt. Wait until the water is boiling at its maximum and then add the pasta, stir gently during cooking and try every minute or so (fresh pasta takes only a few to cook) if the pasta is al dente. Al dente is the Italian expression for "to bite" means that the pasta is not too soft and not too hard, just so that you feel you have "to bite" rather then just to swallow it.
Do's and Don'ts of Pasta Making
Have the sauce ready and the guests seated before you cook the pasta! As it takes only a few minutes to cook fresh pasta they will be perfectly happy to wait for it. Just serve them a nice aperitif and some antipasti (Italian style starters) to pick whilst they wait ...
Don't put oil in the water as it prevents the sauce from sticking to the pasta.
Don't 'drown' the pasta in the sauce, the pasta is the main dish, not the sauce ;-)
And, most importantly, never, ever overcook your pasta!!!