Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Date Night In and Fresh Pasta

The Mr. and I recently agreed that we needed to cut back on how much we eat out. We crunched the numbers and were embarrassed by the amount of money we had spent on food (excluding groceries) in the last month and decided enough was enough. With that being said, we found ourselves sitting home on a Saturday night with a growing rumble in out tummies and I had the [bright] idea to take a stab at making fresh pasta. 
I grabbed my new [signed] copy of Fabio's Italian Kitchen and was off to the kitchen. 

Thanks to my trusty teal Kitchenaid mixer and pasta attachment, this job was waaaay easier than I thought it would be. 

You use one attachment to flatten out the dough and then swap it out for either a linguini or thin spaghetti cutter.

I have limited space in our kitchen so I had to get creative... yes, that's right. I used a clothes hanger to hang my pasta sheets. Just call me Madame MacGuyver.
We opted for the thicker linguini which came out perfectly. Some pieces may break apart because of the
unevenness of the pasta sheets, but it's all going to the same place. If they really bother you, pick them out.
I attempted to get a photo of the finished product but it was inhaled before that was possible! Just trust me, it was AMAZING. The Mr. even raved that it was better than what we had in Italy. Maybe he was just sucking up, but hey, I'll take it.

The recipe below is from Fabio's Italian Kitchen by Fabio Viviani.

10 egg yolks
Pinch of table salt
½ tsp. ground black pepper
2 tsp. olive oil
2 cups flour

TIP: Remember—even though I always ask for large eggs, egg sizes vary. If you see that after you put in the egg yolks, your pasta is sticky, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.

I grew up with fresh egg pasta. The way my great-grandma kept me from destroying the household was to have me crack eight eggs on a cutting board and hand mix them with flour for hours. It’s a very time-consuming maneuver! I am all about preserving tradition, but what about improving the execution of tradition so you can have traditional flavor in a tenth of the time? That’s the way I teach people to make pasta. By following my way, anyone can make it. All you need is a food processor and a blade attachment.
  • Place the egg yolks in a food processor with the blade attachment, add the salt, pepper, and olive oil, and pulse a few times.
  • Add half of the flour and pulse until the eggs absorb it and you have a semi-thick paste. Add the rest of the flour and allow the blade to rotate continuously. When the dough is ready, you should see a ball-shaped mass of flour and eggs bouncing around the canister. If the dough is still too wet to the touch, add an extra tablespoon of flour. If it is a bit dry, add a little water as needed.
  • Take the pasta out and roll/shape according to the directions of the recipe you are making. If you’re saving it for later, wrap it in plastic wrap and place it in the fridge for up to 6 days. (But pasta, according to my grandpa, must be consumed right away, or you should just make a risotto instead!

*Notes from Kasey:
- I used my mixer and paddle blade rather than a food processor and it came out great!
- You can use any sauce with this pasta, I opted for a rich, garlicy bolognese. (Click here for that recipe) topped with Fabio's Mama's Meatballs.

Here's the best shot I snapped before we devoured our dinner! 

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