Friday, April 15, 2011

Making Pasta

My electric Imperia pasta roller and cutter just broke after 25 years of superlative service.  It had the decency not to break until I finished cutting my very last sheet of tajarill, a short 3-inch long fettuccine used in the province of Teramo in Abruzzo made of semolina and whole wheat flour.  I'm going to replace it with the pasta attachments KitchenAid sells for their stand mixers.

I've been making pasta a lot lately, partly because I'm writing a big book that requires everything to be homemade and partly because it just isn't that hard and it's head and shoulders above store bought, noticeably so.  My favorite pasta I cut by hand, the pappardelle which I love to make with a rich duck sauce. 

It's easy as I said.  Pour 3 cups of semolina flour on a work surface and make a well in the middle, like a volcanic crater.  Pour in 1 cup water, a teaspoon of salt and 1 or 2 tablespoons of olive oil.  Using your index finger stir and incorporate the flour on the walls of the crater and once it is absorbed form the dough into a ball and knead for 8 minutes, then let rest 1 hour.  Roll it out and use a pasta cutter roller or cut by hand.  It's up to you.  Lay the pasta on a table covered with a sheet, or in a 11 x 13 inch baking sheet sprinkled with flour so the pasta doesn't stick hopelessly together and let dry 4 hours to 2 days.

If you need more hand holding than that you'll find my detailed instructions here.

[photo: Clifford A. Wright


  1. Hi Clifford,

    My name is Fedor. I use my chance to say how much I appreciate your articles, and especially historical notes.

    I'm very interesting in Mediterranean cuisine (particularly in Tunisian one). If it will be interesting for you, I have made a pictures of a few Tunisian pasta. The name of them are - nwasser, chorba and hlalem.