Tuesday’s Tip of the Week, a few ideas that can help make home-made pasta a success

Like I may have mentioned before, there’s a great sense of satisfaction and gratification that comes with eating home-made pasta. I always feel (whether the feeling is merited or just a figment of my imagination, I don’t know) that there’s something different in the texture and taste to the off the shelf variety. Not to mention the added flexibility especially when it comes to making stuffed pastas such as ravioli or tortellini. Anyway, home-made pasta is an easy process with pretty consistent results if you follow a few basic rules.

Pasta dough is basically just regular all-purpose flour and eggs, they’re combined and kneaded together until they form a nice uniform and elastic dough. The proportions are generally:

For 250g of pasta:

one egg to a cup of flour.

for 500g of pasta:

2 eggs

1 yolk

2 cups of flour

I find that adding an extra egg yolk to every two cups of flour gives the pasta a lovely richness that really adds to the final dish, especially when cooking a sheet pasta.

I understand that adding about one teaspoon of semolina to every couple of cups of flour adds to the ease of handling of the dough, and helps give the pasta a more al dente feel to it once cooked.

Make sure to knead the dough and the eggs well, there’s no point in being delicate with a pasta dough, it’s not a crumbly light short crust!

After kneading the dough together and once you’ve achieved the desired consistency, roll the dough up into a ball, wrap in cling film and allow to rest in a covered bowl for about an hour. This process adds to ease in handling of the dough during the rolling/flattening process.

If you’re going to make a sheet pasta, once you roll the pasta dough into sheets, add the filling and assemble the final pasta as fast as possible. If left out for too long, a pasta dough once rolled becomes dry and will probably tear easily during handling.

Finally, I’ll re-ad the link to the youtube video I enjoy the most when helping me make a pasta dough. Especially owing to his affinity to wine while cooking.

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