Homemade Pasta is to artisanal bread what boxed pasta is to Wonder bread.
Lets learn how to make homemade pasta with the Pro.’s
Fresh,tasty homemade pasta looks and tastes different than the boxed variety sold at your local grocer. Today, I got the pleasure to visit the kitchen of Marcello’s la sirena, an upscale Italian restaurant located in West Palm Beach. Marcello the Executive Chef/Owner has given me 1 hour to watch his sous chef Henry show me the mechanics of making authentic home made pasta. We will be making fettuccini.
It’s one o’clock in the afternoon, so the crew of 4 including Marcello are busily preparing the mise en place necessary for the evenings service. The kitchen is small, clean and quite efficient. There are no novices in the back of this house. Marcello has amazing synergy with his staff, everyone is there for one purpose only, to put out amazing food. Henry is a great multi-tasker. I watched him receive a delivery, scale out this recipe for pasta, sort out which fish was needed for this evenings service, and answer my questions all without skipping a beat. He was doing this, while I watched and listened to Marcello break down fish and tell me about his new culinary “toy” that he just built at his home, a brick oven pizza! Marcello’s love for good food is imbedded in his DNA. Bringing culinary pleasure to his customers is an innate trait that he possesses. His father a notable chef has passed on to his son a culinary gift- the art of service and knowledge about authentic Italian food.
Back to pasta making.
Making pasta with the pro's Click To Tweet Make homemade pasta
The mixing process involves 3 ingredients: 1) 00 flour, 2) whole eggs 3) yolks. The restaurant uses a large mixer because of the quantity of pasta that they need to make. Your kitchen aid will work perfectly for the scaled down version. Chef believes that salt isn’t necessary because after the pastas made, it is cooked in salted boiling water.
- In your kitchen aid bowl – place the flour.
- Add the Eggs- Whisk the eggs on low speed to combine the mixture. The dough will be soft.
- Knead the Pasta Dough: Turn the dough and any excess flour out onto a clean counter. Begin gently folding the dough on itself, flattening, and folding again. It will be extremely soft at first, then gradually start to firm up. Once it’s firm enough to knead, begin kneading the dough. Add more flour as needed to prevent the dough from sticking to you or the counter.
Slice into the dough with a paring knife; if you see lots of air bubbles, keep kneading. The dough is well kneaded when it forms a smooth elastic ball and has very few air bubbles when cut.
- Divide the Pasta Dough: Sprinkle a baking sheet with flour and scrape the ball of dough on top Divide the dough into four equal portions. Dust the portions with flour cover with a clean dishtowel. The pasta will rest as you prepare the next step.
PROFESSIONAL TIP ***
The name of the game at this point is to keep everything well floured to prevent the pasta from sticking to itself or the roller as you work.
If the dough starts to feel sticky as you roll it, sprinkle it with flour. Also sprinkle flour on any pasta you’re not working (rolled, cut or otherwise) with and keep it covered with a dishtowel.
5. Begin Rolling Out the Pasta: Set your pasta machine to the thickest setting (usually marked “1”). Flatten one piece of dough into a thick square disk between your hands and feed it through the pasta roller. Fold this piece of dough into thirds, like folding a letter, and press it between your hands again. With the pasta machine still on the widest setting, feed the pasta crosswise between the rollers. Feed it through once or twice more until smooth. Set aside and move on to the next piece. You will be doing this to each of the 4 pieces of pasta you have divided. This is the hardest part, if you can use get through this, you will feel so proud….
6. Thinning the Pasta: Begin changing the settings on your roller to roll the pasta thinner and thinner. Roll the pasta two or three times at each setting, and don’t skip settings. If the pasta gets too long to be manageable, lay it on a cutting board and slice it in half. Roll the pasta as thin as you like to go. For linguine and fettuccine, go to 6 or 7 on the KitchenAid.
7. Cut the Pasta: Cut the long stretch of dough into noodle-length sheets, usually about 12-inches.When you are cutting into noodles, switch from the pasta roller to the noodle cutter, and run the sheet of pasta through the cutter. Toss the noodles with a little flour to keep them from sticking and lay them flat on parchment paper or on a designated hanger. Set this aside and cut the rest of the dough.
TIP*** ( it’s best to roll out all the pasta before cutting them into noodles).
How long to cook fresh pasta?
8. To cook the pasta: bring a large pot of water to boil, add some salt, cook the pasta for about 5 minutes for al dente.
9. To dry the pasta I would suggest laying the pasta on a clothes hanger until dry then store in an air tight container. OR let the pasta dry in little nests and once dry and brittle store in an air tight container. Buono Appetite!
Please let me know what you think of this recipe. It’s the authentic recipe served at Marcello’s La Sirena