Sunday, August 4, 2013

Just Like Nana Does it: Homemade Fettuccine

With the end of summer not all that far off, I find myself thinking of tomato sauce making day at my Nana's. Every year we crush and cook about 800 jars of tomatoes for sauce, and on the day of eat it fresh with fresh made Fettuccine pasta.

How to make Fresh Fettuccine

Start with 3 cups of flour and 3 eggs in a bowl (I always make too big a mess when I start my pasta right on the counter). Begin mixing with a fork, then get right in there with your hands.

The eggs alone wont be enough to hold the dough together, once you get to the above state (the dough all in little bits and pieces) begin to add a dash of olive oil, followed by a dash of water. Just until the dough begins to hold together when you are kneading it. Remember, this is pasta, the dough will be tough, and should never feel wet or sticky.

You know it is ready when a small piece pinched off can be sheeted in the pasta machine as shown above. As the dough should always be dry to the touch, you will need no additional flour on the rollers. Also, don't worry about kneading it to too smooth a consistency, as you work it one by one down the sizes on your pasta machine, it will do this work for you.

Cut your dough into eighths, and begin sheeting pasta! You'll need to pound it out into a flattish piece before starting the dough on the widest setting. Pass the dough through, fold it in half and pass it through again a couple times on each size until you get it to the thinnest setting.

Then pop over to the fettuccine side and cut your pasta!

I also ran some through on the spaghetti setting.

The pasta should be let to dry a bit before cooking, you can do this by hanging it over a wooden spoon weighted under a stack of dishes. Or if you plan to store the pasta (or freeze it!) nesting the fettuccine may be a better option.

To cook, throw the pasta into salted boiling water, and cook only until it comes to float. I promise it will taste a thousand times better than any pasta out of a box!

Note: it is theoretically possible to make this pasta without the machine, rolling the dough thin with a rolling pin and cutting strips with a knife. But a pasta machine like mine can be picked up fairly inexpensively (mine was about $40) and every kitchen should have one!

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