So many choices out there it can be rather confusing… Here's what I've found out so far…

Pasta Machine

Atlas Pasta Machine

When I was on maternity leave I got into a lot of baking and trying new things that I wouldn’t usually make and mostly turned out well.

Day 2. Fresh Dried Pasta

If you have never made pasta there is nothing like it.

A lot of people I have talked to about me making fresh pasta said they would love to try it and so they will be… I’m planning to make pasta colored with the Christmas colors, drying it and packaging it and giving it as a gift for people.

Pasta Drying Rack

Here’s the recipe I use-

Fresh Egg Pasta
Serves 4 – 6

2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 eggs

• The Dough:

Pile the flour on a clean work surface. Sprinkle the salt on top and mix it with your fingers to combine. Make a well in the middle of the flour – you’re going to be cracking the eggs into this well, so make sure the sides are high enough that the egg won’t break out and run all over your counter. That gets messy real quick.

Crack the eggs into the well. Use a fork to whisk together the eggs as if you were about to make scrambled eggs. Gradually start incorporating the flour from the sides of well. There’s no rush on this and you’ll get faster with practice, so just take your time to begin with. At first it will look like raw eggs, then a slurry, then eventually a dough will start to form.

Once the dough becomes too stiff to stir with the fork, begin kneading it just as you would bread dough. You won’t have used all the original flour, so you can push the extra off to the sides of your workspace. If the dough gets sticky, add a little more flour. Unlike bread dough, you don’t need to worry quite so much about adding too much flour when making pasta.

Keep kneading the dough until it becomes smooth and elastic. If you slice into it with a paring knife, it should be perfectly smooth inside with no air bubbles (ok, a few air bubbles aren’t going to hurt anything!) At this point, set the dough aside, cover it with plastic, and let it rest for 30 minute or so. You can also store the dough in the fridge for up to 24 hours, but let it come back to room temperature before rolling it out.

I want to add colors to it for Christmas so here’s what Google’s come up with –

Fresh Egg Pasta –

To the eggs, add any of these purees or herbs:

Green Pasta with Spinach Puree – Steam or blanch about 1/2 pound of spinach or swiss chard leaves (stems removed) until they are soft and bright green. Puree in a food processor until smooth and press out as much extra liquid as possible before mixing with the eggs.

Red Pasta with Beet PureeRoast two small or one large beet in aluminum foil in a 375° oven until very soft. Peel and puree in a food processor.

So at the end I’ll hopefully have Green, Red and White pasta to package up. Photo’s to come!!

In the mean time if others out there have had success with coloring pasta or have any tips please share!!

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