Monday, January 24, 2011

My Attempt at Noodle-Makin'

So, in brave determination to broaden my culinary horizons, I had my first experience with handmade pasta last night! I won't say it was an incredible success, but it was a valiant first effort.  Here's how it went down:


I went to several different websites (and even watched one video) on how to make pasta dough.  I didn't have the recommended 00 (very very fine) Italian flour, but most sites said that regular flour would work.  I mixed 2 cups of flour with 3 eggs and a splash of olive oil, then kneaded it together.

There was one step I didn't take a picture of, and I think it was a crucial one.  As per the instructions at Smitten Kitchen, I cut the dough into halves and rolled each half into a long tube-like thing and wrapped it tight in aluminum foil, then put it in the fridge for 30 minutes.  This made the dough much more manageable.

After I took it out, I rolled it as thin as I could (but not thin enough) with a rolling pin, then rolled the dough up like you'd roll up . . . wrapping paper or something. :)


Like that.  Can you see that it's rolled up?  Then, with the sharpest knife I have (not sharp enough--I have pretty shitty knives), I cut centimeter-wide slices like this:


See those cute little spirals?  When you unroll them, they make linguini!  (well kind of).  After I'd done this with both rolls, I unrolled all the adorable spirals and dried the pasta for about 15 minutes on the counter (I dried it for as long as it took me to chop the veggies).  My counter looked like this:


Funny, right??  It was pretty exciting, I gotta say, seeing them lookin' all pasta-like up in there.  Then, I chopped up some onion, garlic, red pepper, and rainbow chard, mixed in some sweet grape tomatoes, and sauteed (admittedly, I added a little butter.  And salt, pepper, and Italian seasonings).


Yum.  Then, I made a mistake.  I was going back and forth between just adding the uncooked noodles to the wok with all the veggies, boiling the noodles for a couple minutes, and sauteing them in a separate pan.  I went with the latter, although I think I should have flash boiled them, at least, and maybe thrown them right in with the veggies.  Instead I cooked them separately in a pan, which resulted in them browning too much and ending up a little . . . wonton-like:


But we live and learn.  And I'm super determined, so you better believe I'm trying this again pronto (I'm thinking meyer lemon and cracked pepper pasta), and I'll know what to do better.  After my little noodle wontons were done, I added them to the wok and tossed them with the veggies:


I added a little more salt & pepper, some grated parmesan, and squeezed some delicious meyer lemon on top (this lemon was so sweet that I literally ate a piece of it).

Anna was my guinea pig and she was a good sport about it. :)  I loved the flavor of the whole thing, but the texture of the noodles left something to be desired.  I'm gonna have to consult some more pasta making sites (and my daddy) to get some good tips, but I'm still pretty excited by this--fresh pasta!  Fun!

Have any of you ever made pasta?  If so, throw me some knowledge!

28 comments:

Tracy-Girl @ Then I Got To Thinking said...

Wow... you are amazing! I can hardly make regular mac & cheese! ;) That's awesome... and looks delicious I might add!

J. said...

haha... roll it up like wrapping paper. That made me giggle. ;)
I'm impressed!! I'd love to try this sometime- but I have to admit, I'm much more a 'dump it out of the bag and into the pan' kinda gal.

Micaela said...

fancy! :)

last night i was excited cos i made pizza for us... which means i bought the ready made pizza crust, BUT! i did cut up the veggies ;) ha

i'm going to have to try the recipe you sent! xoxo

shelly said...

good for you claire! cooking at home is always trial and error and it's part of the fun! i have never been brave enough to make much of anything with dough. i am not good with the whole measuring thing. i like to throw it in and go by taste- and that doesn't go over very well in the baking dept!

your dish looks super healthy and totally yummy :)

Kimbirdy said...

pasta seems like such a hard thing to make! i don't think i'll ever be that ambitious. what a brave girl you are to make this! :)

erin elder said...

I've always wanted to make my own pasta, but have been too afraid to try. I really want the kitchen-aid attachment for my mixer that makes pasta look incredibly easy!

Last night I made homemade pizza dough!! I usually buy from Trader Joes, but this dough recipe is better in my opinion!! hopefully i can find one just as good for pasta, then i can share with you!! : )

Isn't it fun trying new recipes?

Crazy Shenanigans-JMO said...

I've never tried making my own pasta, I usually just buy it. It looks like you did a great job!

Krystal said...

I have never done that but it's cool that you tried!!

Phoenix Peacock said...

mmmm I just adore Smitten Kitchen. Even though the recipe didn't come out 100% to your satisfaction, what a fun evening. I love trying new things, don't you?!

Erin said...

Like Kim said... I think I lack that sort of ambition! Bet it tastes amazing though...

Gabby said...

It looks amazing! I've made pasta before and it was hard to get it thin, like what you said. It tasted good though...I just used a simple marinara. I'll probably try it again sometime!

Chic 'n Cheap Living said...

Ooh looks fun and delicious!

Len♥reNeverM♥re said...

hmmm...it's always so fun to try new things~
I heard donot over worked/mixed the dough!
2nd time would be better I'm sure!

xo

Annie Cristina said...

Have I ever made pasta before? Lean Cuisine doesn't count, does it? ;) Seriously, I can barely even boil water. You have impressed this girl.

bklyn76 said...

delish! i <3 pasta in any shape or form, but homemade [by someone else since i've never made it!] is always best! maybe you should fly on up and try it out here!

bananas. said...

looks pretty good! way to try it out. i don't think i ever could.

Marcie said...

Wow, this looks amazing! I am all about carbs.

You can catch Jersey Shore on hulu.com. Also, the girls on the bachelor this season are great. Brad is blah, but who watches for the men anyway?

xo Marcie

Natalie Suarez said...

YUMMMMMMMMMMMMMM! love it :)

natalieoffduty.blogspot.com

Faiza said...

you go girl! i've never made my own pasta but i have to say that your finished product looked mouth-watering! i would have gobbled it all up quick!

maritaBliss said...

How fun top make your own pasta !
My dad gave me a knife-sharpener for Christmas, so my knifes are finally as sharp as they should be ♥

Marz said...

Amazing Claire!!! :) I can't cook a thing, let alone something as impressive as home made pasta! I would have loved to have been your guinea pig!!! Your instructions and side comments made me giggle :) Esp your shitty knives and the cute little spirals (which were very cute I have to say!) haha I can't wait until all of us are cooking (well except for twinkie and me!) in your kitchen together :)

Kara said...

My my my, you are a brave woman. I have never been brave enough to attempt pasta making, and I'm Italian!! I might be inspired enough to try now...

Summer {Bisfor...} said...

that took a lot of time and patience, my love. it looks really good too!

drollgirl said...

i applaud your valiant effort! that is a LOT of work for some pasta! are you sensing that i am too lazy to go to the effort? you are right! lol. but i bet homemade pasta is deeeeeelicious!

this free bird said...

Claire you did a great job. My mom makes homemade noodles and that little roll it in a tube and trim technique is all too familiar in the best way possible. Go girl!!

I'm sick on the couch and think i'll go cry some more now. Pathetic, but true.

xo,
c

Meghan said...

I truly admire your patience for this endeavor - my husband made pasta a few times, and it was so frustrating:) They look delish!

Macy said...

hey girl! can't believe you made homemade pasta! I've never even thought about doing that! it looked pretty tasty! I'm going to have to try and make it at home!

Christina Rodrigues said...

love your blog!
making pasta...wow your my idol :) looks yummy.
have a great week