I challenged myself to try new things in the kitchen and the time is now.
[Skip directly to recipe: Handrolled Pasta Recipe or keep reading for my first time experience making this recipe and my grade!]
I decided to leap for the stars. Well, not really. My husband requested shrimp alfredo for his birthday. I really enjoy showing my love through food and so I was wracking my brain trying to figure out how to elevate shrimp alfredo from a jar of sauce over a box of boiled noodles and some seasoned shrimp. Its his BIRTHDAY. I wanted it to be special.
So, I was watching Beat Bobby Flay and this crazy lady decides she is going to make her own handrolled pasta in like 20 stinking minutes. I’m thinking to myself like… C’mon… You have all the time you need, girl. SURELY, if this lady can make it in 20 minutes, you can make something edible if you take your dang time and read carefully.
I decided to elevate hubby’s b-day dinner by making my own handrolled pasta and homemade alfredo sauce. Newsflash: I have no dough hook, standmixer, or pasta rolling machine. No speciality pasta know how or knowledge. No Italian heritage that I am aware of. So, I’m going into this thing having nothing other than the recipes and techniques I studied on the internet and some scribbled notes from videos on YouTube and television.
Step one for me was finding a recipe that was not too intimidating. Enter, Jill Winger and The Prairie Homestead. Homegirl opened with a quote that put me right at ease: “Rocket Science has no place in my kitchen.” She introduced to me a three ingredient pasta recipe.
3 Egg + 2 cups of Flour + 1/2 teaspoon Salt + (Custom Seasonings)
This is 5-Star clutch for a home chef with little to no equipment. It also felt good because the idea of making pasta was already intimidating. I feel much better about my mistakes when I’m not wasting expensive ingredients in the learning phases. It also gives you a false sense of confidence when there is a short ingredient list. So beware and proceed with respect to the Italian pasta gods.
Bam, so I am cooking with gas. I dug my fingers in and started fluttering around the flour and eggs with my hands. One of the best things about making this recipe was adding flavor to noodles for the first time. I am so accustomed to eating it bland and out of the box. In addition to salt I added
- 1/2 a tablespoon of garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon of black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon of dried parsley
- 1/4 teaspoon of dried basil
[I ended up getting a lot of flavor out of these noodles no matter what I paired them with. Next time I think I am going to try red pepper and garlic!]
Of course I made a mess of dropping the eggs in the well but after getting everything under control I did not think the dough was going to come together. The consistency was different at first. I am definitely a dough novice but I have made cookies, attempted pastry etc, and this dough was very stiff compared to those.
But it eventually came together beautifully. I suggest being super liberal with the flour on the counter and the dough because the dough can be extremely sticky. If it got too dry then I just wet my hands before I started to deal with it again and that helped tremendously.
MY BIGGEST FIRST-TIMER MISTAKE AHEAD:
I did not roll my dough out thin enough. I thought that it was thin enough but the noodles do puff up quite a bit when boiled.
A pasta machine is not necessary at all. BUT, spend the extra time to roll your pasta thin enough to see through. I was aiming for fettucine but the shapes will all be rustic. But they cook up beautifully and even though my noodles ended up a bit thick, they were the tastiest noodles that we had ever had! I would recommend this recipe to any novice that had a Saturday or Sunday to spend some time with the recipe!
After you cut them up just leave them out to dry or cook them immediately. I even froze some to use with chicken parmesan a week later. Make sure when you boil them, the water isn’t too hot. They are waaaay more delicate than the box variety!
[They are also baby friendly! I give them to my 8 month old in a light sauce and she is able to gum them down pretty well!!]
This recipe did require some planning but the result was amazing. You can afford to make a few mistakes and still have a tasty outcome. It was definitely worth the effort and I hope you give it a try!
Media & Content Credits:
I am not a pasta expert! This chronicles my first time experience. If you are looking for expert guidance or more recipe information please read Jill Wagner’s blog and anything else you come across! I study, study, study before attempting new recipes and it always helps me out! I’ve also included a video below that I think is very helpful for technique.
Images courtesy of: