Foray into homemade pasta
My husband and I are planning to make pasta for the first time next weekend. Can anyone recommend a good recipe/tutorial for beginners? We are looking to make pappardelle. I appreciate any guidance!
I just made lasagna sheets for the first time by hand and here are some observations:
I'd use 3 to 1 AP to semolina.
Avoid whole wheat as it adds an extra bite, at least for the first time.
2 cups flour to 3 whole eggs ratio - add salt in boiling water
Start in food processor, knead it for several minutes.
Rest plays a critical role in pasta development. Rest for 10 minutes after FP, then knead by hand a few times, and let rest for at least an hour, before rolling out.
Use immediately after rolled out or properly dry the pasta.
I rolled the sheets out by hand and would comment that the finished product was much thicker than I anticipated.
re: c oliver
I was just reading the link you posted with Hazan's recipe. Possibly no rest is recommended because a machine is used. If not using a machine, I would definitely be frustrated without a rest period. Though I won't buy and use a machine until I make pasta regularly with a rolling pin.
from an old person who learned from her grandmother - and all i can do is tell you how she taught me. I'm sure that others have different ways and techniques, but this has worked for decades.
for each serving - 1 scant cup of flour [for Grandma, it was one handful, but i measure] + 1 LARGE egg [watch the size of the eggs you use - it makes a difference in texture], + a generous pinch of salt.
She used regular old AP flour - I've never tried it with any other, but be warned, because the gluten content is pretty high, you MUST let it rest - see below.
Mound all the flour on a board [i mix the salt into the flour], make a crater, then break the eggs into it. I use a fork to beat the eggs and to start bringing in the flour from the sides of the wall a bit at a time, but there always comes a time that only hands will do.
Knead it - adding dribbles of water until it comes together and is elastic. You're going for the texture of a baby's behind [even though it might be a little bumpy in places.
Let it rest. if you're making only a small recipe [like two servings], 30 minutes should do it - check it by kneading it a few times. if it's smooth and elastic and seems to go where you want it [instead of fighting you], it's good to roll.
for larger batches [trust me on this], you'll need a couple of hours. Put it on a board, cover it with a bowl, and every once in a while [30- minutes? or so], stop by and knead it a little, then cover again. you're going for a smooth, elastic texture [baby's behind - no lumps]
Once a year is ravioli making day, which involves dough made from a 5-pound bag of flour. THAT batch is put into a ziplock bag and refrigerated overnight. I'M NOT FIGHTING IT!!!
Until a few years ago, i was a roll-by-hand person. No more. My great -aunt's hand cranked pasta roller has saved me. I could rarely get the correct, uniform thickness by hand rolling.
about rolling the dough. yes, you have to use as little flour as possible. I put a small pile on the upper right corner of the board [hey, i'm right handed], and pick it up like this: i spread my hand over the pile, lay it lightly and FLAT on the flour, spread my fingers, and then close them - kind of like opening and closing scissors. And then dust the pasta sheet. That small amount of flour seems to be just right for me.
hope this helps - and i know others have lots of other info. It's not hard - just takes a bit of time.
oh. one more thing. as you cut and separate the pasta, lay it out FLAT AND NOT TOUCHING on tea towel-lined flat surfaces. Or you can drape it over a pasta dryer [or even a clothes drying rack if you're willing to clean it before and after.
Thanks everyone! We used the serious eats article and loved the outcome. This could become a new obsession.