Saturday, 8 December 2012

Wedding Present Pasta

As I mentioned a few post's ago, we received a pasta maker as a wedding present from some lovely friends.  We've had a busy few weeks so have only just got round to using it.  I know making pasta isn't technically baking but I shall blog about it anyway!

So the ingredients are pretty simple - '00' flour (an extra refined flour) and eggs. The dough didn't come together very well so I added a little water to acheive an "homogenous" dough (the recipe's requirements).  The dough was ever so tough that I was starting to   wonder if I had gone wrong already!  But I ploughed on.

I set up the machine by clamping it to the work surface - this wasn't easy, as unless you have a breakfast bar I expect most people have cupboards directly under their work surface. So a bit of bodging later, we had a secure machine - there is no way you could do this without clamping it down!!

As I hadn't use the machine before, I had to use a bit of the dough to clean the machine.  This involved rolling through a sheet of pasta a few times - which I then had to throw away.

The general process was roll it through on the thickest setting about 8 times (folding the dough in between rolls), before slowly making the thickness setting thinner and thinner.  Some of the pieces of dough got incredibly long and difficult to handle so needed to be cut in half.  (An extra pair of hands also helped!)  I didn't take many photos as with one hand turning the handle, one feeding the dough in the machine, one taking it out, I was already one hand down!

After it had got to the right thickness, and had dried a little, it was time to cut it.  The machine came with two cutters (a fettuccine and a spaghetti width I believe) so we decided we wanted the fettuccine one.   Straight through the cutter rollers and we were almost there.

After laying out the pasta over every flat surface in the kitchen to dry it all, I can understand why people have pasta drying racks.  This was just a very small amount of the pasta drying:

After it had dried, it was ready for the pan - I cooked it for about 2-3 minutes but that was slightly too long in retrospect.  But it was lovely - definitely worth the effort.  

Top tip: enrol an extra pair of hands to help!

Tomorrow -> welsh cakes :)

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