Easy Peasy Pasta
I believe that food easily transcends to art, in more than one form, from tastes, to visual and textures, I am sure there are even more ways and they will all come to me in time.
And so as an artist, I often strive to create a piece of work even when I cook, bake or plate a meal, I also enjoy cooking in beautiful kitchens, a well appointed kitchen makes my mouth water, my mind lights up with ideas and my hands itch to create in the kitchen. I do not like to use many kitchen gadgets, but I do have a few favorite, I think the first would be my KitchenAid (the professional stand mixer). I use it almost daily, from pasta dough to desserts and breads. I do love my favorite knife, and I like to keep it sharp! I do love all that is wooden in my kitchen and most of all my butcher block, which I saved from destruction as I rescued it on the side of the road, it was heading for the garbage truck!
The next big investment I want to make in my kitchen is a gas stove, why? I want more than 4 burners to use, I already own two extra burners, one electric, the other is induction, both get used regularly, but it is more gadgets than I want in my kitchen for sure.
5 cups AP(all-purpose) flour or
4 cups AP flour and 1 cup semolina flour
5 eggs (approximate, add more water if less eggs!)
3 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp coarse salt
With all that said, I want to speak on making pasta from scratch, I have stopped using a recipe a long time ago, as I found them to be inaccurate for me to use, I use eggs in my pasta from my hens, and believe (correctly or not) that it makes my pasta healthier, I usually measure out about 5 cups of AP (all-purpose) flour, unbleached is better. Sometimes I will use semolina too, about 1 cup for 4 cups flour, and I add as many eggs I want, I usually use 6 or 7. I will then add a good pinch of sea salt and about 2 tablespoon olive oil.
I try to be careful not to add too much water, it is better to have a stiffer dough than a wet dough.
Using the dough hook on my KitchenAid, I work the dough till it is shiny and forms a ball on its own.
I then flour my butcher-block and dump the dough onto the surface, reversing the bowl over it. I try to let it rest some 20 minutes.
I then separate in four balls, placing 3 back under the bowl and work with one, flattening it, making sure there is plenty of flour, and then starting at the largest setting, I pass it through the pasta maker three times at that setting, folding it in three onto itself, I then start really rolling out the pasta till it is the thickness of choice, I rarely go to the last setting, unless for a very delicate ravioli.
Tip of the day: I use a pizza cutter to cut my pasta the width I want, it cuts better than anything else!
I usually prefer to let any pasta dry out for a bit (30 to 60 min) before cooking as it is easier to handle, I find hanging it works best for me, but I do plan on making pasta that can also dry on a sheet pan with a lot more flour like a professional! Notice my cool pasta hangers? An awesome gift from my eldest son, yes, he loves fresh pasta.
I hope this is a simplified method of making pasta for you, I know that it thrills me to serve it to my family every time!
Cook it in roiling boiling very salted water for...not long, starting at 2 minutes before testing it. I suggest cooking it till al dente. Bon appétit!