The mini half-Bavarian aliens love to cook … here’s how we made fresh pasta with our new pasta machine.
We used the pasta to make easy tagliatelle, lasagne and cannelloni – watch this space as I’ll post for the recipes for the fillings and sauces tomorrow!
Incredibly Easy Fresh Pasta – Kinderleicht!
Ingredients (serves 4-5)
150g plain flour
150g Hartweizengrieß (durum wheat semolina)
Method (15 minutes preparation time plus half an hour to rest the dough)
1) Mix the plain flour and the semolina flour together in a large bowl
2) Pour the flour onto a clean surface or a large tray, and make a well in the middle of the pile.
3) Crack the eggs into a bowl and beat lightly
4) Pour some of the beaten egg into the well in the middle of the flour
5) Use your hand to mix the egg into the flour
5) Keep adding the egg a little at a time and mixing it into the flour (the only reason for doing it a little at a time is to avoid getting egg everywhere!)
6) Once all the egg is incorporated into the flour knead vigorously for 10 minutes. As long as your hands are clean and your surface lightly floured, there is no way to do this “wrong”; the more it is kneaded the better. For this reason kneading the dough is an excelent job to assign to a small child with a lot of energy!
7) Wrap the dough in cling-film and allow it to rest in the fridge for at least half an hour.
We make the dough on a weekend morning and leave it in the fridge to use when we make dinner in the evening.
The kneaded dough also freezes well in a zip lock bag for use another day – we made double quantities to get 2 meals worth of dough, and froze half.
8) Roll the dough out thinly – we used our inexpensive pasta machine, but there is no reason this wouldn’t be possible with a rolling pin. Using the semolina flour and kneading well should mean you don’t need any more flour at this point, but have some to hand to dust on the dough if it feels sticky.
Take a piece of the dough the size of a fist, and use your hands or a rolling pin to flatten it enough to go through the machine on setting number 1.
9) If you want professional looking rectangles fold the sheet of rolled pasta and repeat the process (we like the rustic look so we didn’t bother!) Be careful the pasta doesn’t stick to itself as it comes out of the machine, or you’ll have to roll that sheet again.
10) If you want sheets of pasta for Lasagne or Cannelloni, you’re finished! Use immediately in your dish. For tagliatelle, use the cutting attachment on your pasta machine and roll the sheets of pasta through that one last time; the individual strings really do get tangled, so this is a 2 person job! We hung them on a clothes dryer to stop them sticking together!
Fresh pasta cooks in about a minute, and really does rise to the top of the water once cooked! Obviously you can also bake it as you would dry pasta, and it really does taste better – have fun!