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making pasta

I'd like to try making pasta from scratch. Is it hard to do? Any tips for a first attempt? thanks.

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  1. Nah, it's fun and easy, especially if you have a stand mixer/dough hook. Here's the basic recipe. 2 c. all purpose flour (I use 1/2 c. semolina & 1 1/2 AP flour) 3 eggs. If making w/out a mixer, put the flour in a large bowl and make a well in the center. Beat the 3 eggs litely and dump into the well. Using a fork gently begin incorporating the flour into the eggs a little at a time. When dough begins to come together, turn onto a floured board and knead the hell out of it for 8-10 mins. Form into a disk and wrap in plastic tightly for 30-60 mins (NOT IN THE FRIDGE!!!) If you have a mixer, dump everything in at once, put the dough hook on and start @ low, increasing to med. as the dough comes together. Let machine go for 6-8 mins. Once dough is rested, I divide into six pieces and start thinning them in the pasta rollers. (Oh, do you have a pasta maker/ attachment for mixer? If not, rolling out pasta by hand is MAJOR work! Pasta dough does NOT need salt or olive oil, despite what some folks think. The above recipe is basically Marcella Hazan's method.
    Happy pasta adventure!! Adam
    P.S. Warning: once you've made and enjoyed homemade pasta, it spoils you for anything less....

    10 Replies
    1. re: adamshoe

      Thanks Adam for the speedy reply. As luck would have it, I have a Kitchenaide stand mixer and even the pasta attachment. I've never used it because the idea of making the pasta was so intimidating. I'm going to give it a try. Thank you so much for the specific ideas. I even have semolina flour in my pantry!

      1. re: dimsumgirl

        The recipe is enough for 2 generous batches of dough (for 2 peeps); I always freeze 1/2 of it. Make sure you flatten your pieces of dough w/ the heel of your hand before starting the thinning and use copious amounts of flour sprinkled on the sheets for the first 2/3 times thru the rollers. I rarely go all the way to #8, as it's way-y-y thin. 6 or 7 is good for fettucine and 5 is perfect for thicker spaghetti. Buon Appetito....Adam
        P.S. Make sure your pasta water is "as salty as the sea"-usually 1 tbsp. table salt per 3 1/2 qts. water.

        1. re: adamshoe

          I know this a month later but....Why make sure the water is pretty salty??
          Thanks....

        2. re: dimsumgirl

          how did the semolina flour pasta work out? generally, I find semolina by itself is really too hard a wheat for fresh pasta (it's used in dry pasta, which is just flour and water). If you want to use semolina, for some reason, it's generally better to cut it with about 2/3 all-purpose.

        3. re: adamshoe

          I've made Marcella's recipe a few times, I use 1/2 unbleached all purpose and 1/2 00. I made some about 4 hrs ago and decided to just wrap in plastic wrap, leave on counter, not fridge. Now, I'm going to use pasta attachment to roll it out. (Am I making a big mistake having left it unrefrigerated so long??)

          1. re: walker

            Probably won't kill you but I would be very careful bout leaving something with raw eggs out for 4 hours, especially in a warm kitchen.

            1. re: rezpeni

              I did not get a reply in time; my intuition/common sense told me it'd be ok. Ate it several hours ago and feel fine. Kitchen was on the cool side. Has anyone else ever tried this little experiment?

              1. re: walker

                never had a problem with it. in fact, it's really important to let the pasta rest at least 30 minutes before rolling ... the glutens get pretty tight during the kneading process and if you don't let the dough rest, the pasta will twist and buckle when you're rolling it out.

          2. re: adamshoe

            Making pasta is like getting used to contact lenses. I cursed both the first few times but now I can make great pasta without a big mess & I can wear my contacts. :) Fresh pasta cooks faster than dried so keep an eye on it. There are sooo many things you can do with fresh pasta. Our favorite is to soak some dried mushrooms, then dice & toss in cooked pasta with olive oil, a tiny bit of truffle oil, salt, and pepper. Sprinkle with Asiago cheese and parsley.