When I make fresh pasta at home, it’s in large batches, so that I can freeze some of it. And if you’re picturing me slaving away with mixing and kneading, well, let’s not get carried away. I use this:
Ah, yes. a KitchenAid mixer is a beautiful thing to behold. Mine was a birthday gift from my adorable husband, long before he was my adorable husband. I can’t say that I use it every day or even every week, but when I use it, man I love it.
I use my bread hook and my pasta attachments for this. Of course, you can knead, roll, and cut by hand also…the KitchenAid mixer is not a vital part of this recipe, it simply makes it a lot easier on your arms.
The beauty of homemade pasta is not just the amazing flavor, but the smooth texture of it. And there’s nothing more beautiful on the plate then the supple ribbons of it, lightly topped with your favorite sauce. I’m an addict.
Homemade Pasta Recipe
- 2 cups semolina flour
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup cold water
- Combine both flours and salt in a large bowl and mix well with a fork. Mixing these ingredients together before incorporating them with the rest of the ingredients assures a well-blended pasta.
- In your stand mixer bowl, add the eggs and beat well with a fork.
- Add the olive oil and mix again.
- Add cold water and mix again.
- Add about 1/2 of the flour mixture to the egg mixture and, using the dough hook, mix for about 30 seconds. Turn off the mixer, scrape the sides of the bowl, and turn it back on for another 20 seconds.
- Add the rest of the flour mixture and repeat previous step. You basically just want to incorporate all of the ingredients at this point.
- Now, turn your mixer to speed 2 and knead for about 3 to 4 minutes until a ball has formed. Again, you may need to shut off the mixer and scrape the sides of the bowl once until everything is a smooth ball.
- Dump the dough ball onto a lightly floured surface and hand-knead for about 3 minutes.
Pasta dough shouldn’t be sticky, nor should it be dry and falling apart. If either of these things are happening, don’t panic. If it’s too sticky, just incorporate a bit more flour and knead a bit more until smooth. If it’s too dry, just add a touch – 1/2 teaspoon or less – of cold water and knead until smooth.
Wrap your smooth pasta ball in plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour. It’s important to always let your pasta dough rest. Remove from fridge and let come to room temperature, about 20 minutes longer.
Flatten the ball well with your hands and, using a sharp knife or dough knife, cut the circle into 8 slices, like a pizza.
Take your first “slice” and flatten well with your hands. Always keep the remaining pieces of dough covered with plastic wrap, when not in use.
Using the widest (1) setting on your pasta roller attachment, turn your mixer onto speed 2 and feed your flattened dough through it. Repeat twice.
Adjust your roller attachment to the 2 setting and roll your dough through, then adjust to the 3 setting and repeat, setting 4 and repeat, then setting 5 and repeat. This is the point where I like my linguine, fettuccine and ravioli noodles, but that’s personal preference also. You’ll definitely want to go thinner if you’re doing an angel hair.
You may need to cut your finished pasta sheets in half before slicing them, or you’ll end up with super long pasta – I find I have to cut mine in half every time. And if you’re making ravioli or stuffed pasta, obviously you won’t need to continue to the slicing steps.
Swap out your roller attachment with your cutting attachment and cut your pasta. Hang to dry and repeat steps until you’re through all your pasta dough.
I’ve purchased 2 large, inexpensive (less than $15) clothing racks to dry my cut pasta on & they work great; just make sure that they’re wiped off well before using. Try your best to separate the strands as you hang them, so you don’t end up with big clumps of pasta. I also don’t let them dry completely on the racks – only partially and then I lay them on parchment paper – I find if they dry completely on the rack, they become too brittle and break into pieces.
To freeze my pasta, I find that those disposable, Tupperware-like containers work best. Freezer bags will work if you have a spot in your freezer where they won’t get crushed but in my freezer, containers work best. You don’t need to defrost the past before cooking either; just add an extra minute or so to your cooking time.
When cooking fresh pasta, it only takes a few minutes. The actual time, of course, will depend on the thickness of your pasta.
Hopefully I haven’t missed anything. Though this may sound like a lot of work, it’s really not, though it can get a little monotonous when doing large batches. I tend to make at least two batches of dough when I’m making mine, so a glass of good red wine and some music helps make the experience a lot more enjoyable.