Oh boy, where to even begin on this one.
So, for years my husband had been wanting to make fresh pasta. And to me,that seemed silly.
I thought, “That seems like excessive amounts of work for something you can easily buy at the store”.
I can take or leave pasta – it’s never really been my thing. It’s not that amazing to me.
It’s good, don’t get me wrong – I do enjoy it – but it’s just usually like something that other great stuff (like creamy sauces, cheeses, or meat) goes on top of to stick to something.
Well – I am completely reformed. I will scream from the rooftops that I was WRONG – WRONG, WRONG. And, I hate being wrong.
But, I have a newfound love for fresh pasta. Like, serious, obsessive, compulsive, can’t think of much else anymore, love.
Obsession is probably the right word to use – but love seems more gentle and less maniacal. Nope, I’m FREAKIN’ obsessed.
You seriously haven’t lived until you’ve done this. I’m not lying nor am I exaggerating its greatness.
It is… a-may-zing.
Like, it will be hard to ever even eat out again anywhere now that we’ve done this.
AND – to top it all off, we made a great dish to highlight its magnificent decadence.
And yes – you are the beneficiary of all that wisdom.
If you choose to buy store bought pasta it will probably still taste good – but nothing will ever compare to making it exactly the way I describe.
Imagine chewing softly through pillowy mouthfuls of heaven… well, that doesn’t even begin to explain it.
No words can truly do this justice. You’d have to make your own fresh pasta to understand.
This was a 3 part meal that probably took us around two hours to complete – which is really not bad considering it was our first time making pasta from scratch.
We first made the pasta noodles, set that to the side, then made the sauce for the pasta, the fish, and finally – cooked the pasta about 5 minutes before the fish was done (which was perfect since we broiled the last 5 minutes of the fish).
Home-Made Pasta the Easy Way
If you choose to make fresh pasta, the way we did it – and I have to believe this is the easiest way, is to buy the Kitchen Aid attachment pasta maker.
Until recently, we didn’t even realize that our Kitchen Aid mixer (a hand-me-down from my Mother-in-Law) HAD this little doohickey attachment area up at the top.
If you have a Kitchen Aid, check the little circle at the top of the mixer and pop that off with a screw driver.
Yes, people, you can stick things in there.
I’m tempted to say, “you can put your weed in it,” and maybe you can, but more importantly, you can actually put useful accessories that automate otherwise tedious manual processes in there.
Making pasta by hand would probably be very tedious, but it’s a cinch with one of these accessories – you can check it out on Amazon with this link.
You just pop that circle, unscrew the knob, and put your attachment in there and turn on your mixer.
I will warn you these attachments are not cheap – I bought it as an anniversary present for my husband and I. But, it is quite the investment.
I had this romantic notion of the two of us feeding each other raw pasta dough as we drank wine and rubbed our hands through the fresh spaghetti strings a la Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze in Ghost.
It wasn’t quite like that – but it was actually fun and way easier than I thought it would be.
Here’s a sample of the dough being run through the first roller.
You basically make your dough – run it through the pasta smusher (my term) from largest size to smallest, until it becomes super thin and almost transparent (you can see your fingers a bit through it at the end). Then, you use the next attachment – fettuccine in our case… to cut your pasta strings.
Then we just set it aside to make the rest of the food, and then threw it in boiling, salted water for about 4 minutes.
The actual recipe for the dough goes like this:
- 2 cups 00 flour or semolina flour
- 3 eggs and 2 egg yolks
That’s it. Some people add salt, but we opted to salt our water and it came out just fine.
- Just put your dough in a mound on a flat surface area (we used a cutting board), then make a little punched out middle like a volcano.
- Drop your eggs and egg yolks into the middle volcano.
- Stir with either a fork or your hands until the eggs are somewhat blended, then start to incorporate the flour, until it is completely absorbed.
- Knead it for a little bit with your hands until it is mostly mixed together, but don’t over-knead it either.
- Following the instructions on your pasta machine, run the dough through the machine until it at the desired size and then use the desired cutting method you wish for the pasta type you are making. For example, we ran ours through each number on our pasta machine until we hit number 7, then we used the fettuccine attachment to cut fettuccine.
Pasta Sauce Recipe
- 1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese
- 1 cup Ricotta Cheese
- 1 cup Spinach
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup starch water from pasta (add to thin sauce)
- Mix all ingredients together except the starch water
- Add starch water as needed to thin the sauce out
- Toss the pasta in the sauce until coated
- 2 6 oz pieces of salmon
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 2 tbsp white wine
- 2 cloves minced garlic
- salt & pepper
- In a glass baking dish just big enough to hold the fish, place the salmon in skin side down
- Take the minced garlic, add salt and pepper, ad smash it into the fish top evenly – using your hands
- Pour the liquid over the fish
- Place the fish into the oven at 375 degrees for 15 minutes
- For the last 5 minutes, broil the top of the fish until it is crispy and seared but not burned
- Remove from oven and spoon the liquid over the fish
- Sprinkle parsley on top and serve over pasta