BasqueStage Candidate Post -A Unique Pasta

BasqueStage Candidate Post  -A Unique Pasta

Who doesn’t love pasta and fresh pasta is just the icing on the cake. I want to share with you how to make your own fresh pasta that you can make with your own unique twist. But don’t break out your pasta machine or mixer, we have become accustomed to every-day appliances that help with making things faster and better. After reading “The Rituals of Dinner: The Origins, Evolution, Eccentricities and Meaning of Table Manners” by Margret Visser I’ve had the urge to become as close to my food as possible. These appliances have just stepped between me and my food, and nobody or anything gets to do that!  Our hands are sensitive to temperatures and textures, so when we humans are touching things a deeper understanding is found through those extra senses. As a child I love to touch everything and helping to make pasta was something I truly enjoyed. We used a wooden table, rolling pins and a knife. The dough would be stuck between fingers and in my hair. I remember pulling the dough off my hands and making shapes and animals with it. Defiantly puts a smile on my face.

So to make the pasta all that is needed is some flour, eggs, and salt, maybe a little water and your secret ingredient. Any of your own favorite pasta recipes will work for me I love yolky pasta so I used a cup of flour, 1 egg and a yolk, 1/2 a teaspoon of salt and a few teaspoons of water to bring it all together. So your probably asking were this secret ingredient comes in to play. Well, a little trick I learned at school was putting spices or fresh herbs like basil into pastas. Today I used freshly cracked peppercorns but in the past I have used basil, sorrel and ramp leafs. This gives the all ready amazing fresh pasta a beautiful taste and unique look that can accent the sauce of your choice. Like for instance I made pasta carbonara and instead of putting peppercorns in the sauce I placed them inside the pasta. Basil inside the pasta along with any sugo is a classic pair as well.

So lets get started…
Make a mound of flour and salt then hollow out the middle of the mound placing the eggs inside.
 Then with a fork began to beat the eggs and mix in a little flour at a time until it becomes manageable with your hands. A little water may need to be added to help bind everything together.
 A little water might be need to help bind the dough together, but be careful not to make it to wet. Knead the dough with your hands for about 3 minutes. Then wrap in plastic wrap and allow to rest for about a hour before you began rolling it out.
 The dough once rested should be cut into manageable pieces as needed. Then on a flour dusted table roll out a piece of dough about a 1/4 of an inch.
 Now its time for your own special ingredient! I placed what looks like a lot of freshly cracked peppercorns on one half of the dough. In reality once you began to roll that dough out with a rolling pin the dough will become bigger and distribute the peppercorns throughout. The same with fresh herbs place them close together on half of the dough and once you roll the dough out to the desired thinness the dough will have pieces of torn herbs. Its a really beautiful sight to see!
 Once the dough is rolled out paper thin it is time to cut or shape your past. I chose to make Maltagliati pasta, its like a rough cut of pasta, shaped like a triangle or a diamond with no waste.
 Using a pizza cutter I ran it across the dough in half, from the right side i rolled the cutter at a diagonal from the bottom with a slight angle to the left up to the top of the dough, then straight down to the bottom of the dough. Then repeated to the end, making ruff triangles. Leave them out to dry and there ready for some salted boiling water and your favorite sauce.

Now its time to go out there and kick your pasta up a notch, get creative and get back in “touch” with your food!


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