We are a family who likes pasta . . . lots of pasta. Several years ago, I decided to try my hand at making my own homemade pasta and I haven’t stopped.
Equipment is nice, but not necessary
At the time I owned a Kitchen Aid mixer, which I used for mixing the pasta dough. I will forever be in awe of Italian women who mixed this stuff by hand for centuries before electricity and mixers. It is some stiff dough! The Kitchen Aid worked great and could mix one batch of dough fairly easily.
Last year, Bill found this Hobart mixer at a liquidation sale. Having this in my kitchen has transformed baking day, which is a post for another day. Needless to say, I can mix a lot of pasta dough in the Hobart.
Preparing the dough; the recipe and the process
This week proved to have a free afternoon so I decided to spend it making pasta. It really is fairly easy to do. Pasta dough is made from very basic ingredients: flour, eggs, salt, and water. Here is my recipe:
Homemade Pasta Dough
- 3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 large eggs, beaten
- 2 Tablespoons of water (You may need a little more depending on the weather.
- Place eggs, water, flour and salt into mixer bowl. Mix for 30 – 60 seconds. Change to dough hook and knead for 2 minutes. Hand knead for another 2 minutes. Let pasta dough rest for 20 minutes.
Please note, I doubled the recipe for the dough in the following pictures
Hand knead for 2 minutes.
Let the dough rest for 20 minutes.
Once the pasta has had a chance to rest, I divide it into equal pieces.
This recipe should result in 8 – 10 equally divided pieces of dough. I want the pieces to be fairly small because they will roll out to be much longer.
Rolling the dough
The next step is to roll your dough. I use, and would recommend, an Atlas pasta roller and cutter. It works really well and can make lasagna, fettuccine, or angel hair pasta. Set your pasta maker dial to “1” and roll each piece of dough through the machine.
Move the dial to “2” and repeat the process. Continue to change the dial and roll your pasta until you get the desired thickness. I usually roll my dough to “5.”
This works well for lasagna and fettuccine noodles, although you could make them thicker or thinner if you prefer. Angel hair pasta would need to be rolled quite a bit thinner.
Cutting the pasta
Now it is time to cut. If you are making lasagna noodles, this step can be skipped.
Dust the sheets of pasta with flour and feed them through the cutter. You can also cut the noodles by hand if you want a different size noodle or don’t own a pasta cutter.
Now, lay them to dry or hang them on a pasta rack. Allow them to air dry until just slightly brittle. They don’t need to be completely dry like store bought, packaged pasta.
If you are going to store them for later, package them in freezer bags and place them in the freezer. I always separate my lasagna noodles with wax paper so they don’t stick together.
If you are going to cook and enjoy them right away, you can skip the drying stage.
While homemade noodles definitely take some time to make, they are well worth the effort. They freeze beautifully, so making them ahead of time can make for an easy and special dinner for your family.