Making pasta – the basics

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I’ve been wanting to have one for a while; a real pasta machine… Once.. a couple of years ago I followed a workshop on making pasta. That was not a success. Far too many people where crammed into one space with just a handful of pasta machines. The result? I was convinced that making your own pasta was difficult and not worth the trouble. Until Charlotte suggested we try her machine (which needed some serious dusting before we could use it) and make our own pasta. It was on the hottest day of the year and we were sweating in the kitchen but apart from the fact that we had a lot of fun doing it it was also quite tasty and not at all difficult. So I wanted to have a machine too. And as luck would have it I have a Kitchen Aid and there is a handy attachment for the Kitchen Aid to make pasta. It does the turning itself and I kind of liked that fact.

Uhm... nee Simone, zo moet het er niet uit zien!

No Simone, this is not how it is supposed to look!!

And – such coincidence – it was also my birthday, so Tom got me a pretty attachment for my Kitchen Aid. To make my own pasta. So ofcourse Charlotte and I set a date to make some more pasta (why change a winning team right?) and we set out to make our pasta. Dough came together in a few minutes. I still had some 00 flour lying around, egg thrown in and start the kneading. I kind of forgot that that is the part that takes a bit of work, but if you need some extra exercise or need to get rid of some frustrations; perfect!

And while the dough was resting we could cook and bake some other delicious things for dinner and after about 1,5 hours we could start turning the dough. As you can see… the first attempt left something to be desired… 😉 I had to kind of get to known the machine and how to handle the dough but once we got the hang of it, it was very simple.

Kijk dat ziet er al beter uit

See that looks a lot better already!

And the turning of the dough was so much easier with the KitchenAid than it was with the handmachine. Biggest advantage? you have two hands available for guiding the dough through the machine. ofcourse you have that as well if you’re with more than one person but still it’s handy that you can also do it alone. We chose to make spaghetti this time. In the package there are three rollers; one for lasagna sheets and kneading the dough, one for spaghetti and one for tagliatelle. We did make the spaghetti a little too long. Spaghetti of about a meter is maybe a bit too mcuh.. Lol… It gets entangled and becomes hard to mix with anything!

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The pasta itself was really good. I picked a simple recipe from Jamie (as in Jamie Oliver) because it seemed a good choice for fresh pasta. And I had test the cooking times as well, as fresh pasta literally takes a few minutes to make. But ofcourse the thickness of the pasta determines the final cooking time. Three minutes in our case.

Tikkie lang misschien Charlotte?

Maybe a bit too long Charlotte?

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Pasta alla trapanese

5 from 1 reviews

I thought this pasta was really good but a little dry. Only now do I find out that I needed to use 600 gr tomatoes and I had only 250 gr. That explains a lot… 🙂 But it was still tasty!

  • Author:
  • Prep Time: 1 hour 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 5 mins
  • Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4
  • Category: Basic, pasta

Ingredients

For the pasta

  • 400 gr flour type 00
  • 4 eggs

For de rest

  • 150 gr white almonds
  • 600 gr cherry tomatoes
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 handfuls of basil
  • 150 gr parmesan cheese
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • seasalt and freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

Pasta

  1. To make the dough for the pasta you need to put the flour into a large bowl and make a dent in the middle so you have a nest to break the eggs in. Use a fork to mix the eggs with the dough until it is firm enough to start kneading. Knead until it is a soft and pliable dough that is not too sticky.
  2. Wrap the ball in clingfilm and put in the fridge to rest for 1,5 hours
  3. Remove from the fridge and divide into smaller pieces. Keep whatever you are not using in the plastic so it doesn’t dry out.
  4. Knead it for a bit and flatten it with a rolling pin so you can put it through the pasta machine.
  5. Keep working the pasta by folding it and putting it through again for as long as it takes to get a really smooth and nice dough. Put the roller on a thinner number as you go along until it is thin enough.
  6. Dust your pasta with flour to make sure it will not stick and than roll it through the spaghetti cutter. Leave to dry on a drying rack and cook until al dente (depending on the size of your pasta but mine took 3 minutes to cook

For the trapanese

  1. According to Jamie you should first roast the almond and then put them in a pestle and mortar but I skipped that part and blitzed them in a stick blender. It might have adifferent flavor but I liked it the way it was. Put the ground almonds in a large bowl.
  2. Put garlic, basil and the parmesan into the stickblender as well and blend till a fine puree with salt and pepper. Add to you almonds. Add the tomatoes and squeeze them all with your hands and mix with the almonds. Make the sauce even more moist by adding some olive oil and mix it through your cooked and hot pasta. Add salt and pepper if needed!

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Simone van den Berg

Food- and travelblogger from the Netherlands. Loves good food. Loves to taste good food the world over. She also loves to share travelstories, delicious recipes and ok, cat pictures too. She sometimes feels the need to get really healthy for a while, always mingled with periods of insanely delicious sweets and other decadent treats. Lives together with Tom and their two cats; Humphrey and Buffy. Profession: Food photographer

6 comments

  1. I don’t make pasta often enough. I should get one of those fancy pasta thingos for the kitchenaid. I have the hand cranked one.

  2. I have the KA pasta attachment also, my first results also looked the same! I don’t practice often enough for sure. I have plans tomorrow to do homemade semolina pasta, I will make sure not to make my noodles to long though!

  3. I love making pasta! Made some last week, in fact, and was going to make it this week but we decided to go out to dinner instead — to an Italian place where we had pasta! It does take a bit of practice to get it right. I have the hand crank machine, and it does take some juggling to crank and guide the pasta at the same time, although once you get the hang of it, it works fine. That KA attachment looks wonderful, though!

  4. Your pasta looks lovely! I miss my KA attachment :). I never dry my noodles before cooking them. In fact, many Italians only dry their noodles if they plan to cook them later. Just throw the pasta in boiling water for 3-4 minutes right after you’re done making them! 🙂

    • O that’s good to know! I wasn’t sure but than we were making them ahead so I had to leave them somewhere anyway, so it’s a good thing you can dry them… But I didn’t know it’s not absolutely necessary… Thanks for the tip!

  5. Kitchenaid has added a set of two more pasta cutters attachment (KPCA), Angel Hair and Thick Noodle. Kitchenaid has also added a Pasta Press extruder (KPEXTA) attachment to the line capable of making 6 different types of pasta (spaghetti, large macaroni, small macaroni, bucatini, rigatoni and fusilli).

    With the standard roller pasta cutters you can add all types of seeds, herbs and spices to your pasta which you cannot do with the pasta press (extruder) because they will get stuck in the extruder form plates. However you can add liquid (tomato juice) to pasta being made in the pasta press (extruder). Think tomato basil pasta or cracked black pepper pasta or garlic pesto pasta. Just make sure you use each type of pasta maker attachment within the confines of what it can do and the culinary world is wide open to your imagination.

    I have a Cuisinart® Prep 11 cup Plus™ food processor and I use it to make my pasta dough. It takes about 6 pulses of the machine to form a 1 lb. dough ball (less than 3 minutes) which I take out, knead for a minute and wrap in cling-wrap letting rest in refrigerator for 20 minutes before finish kneading till silky smooth and processing through the Kitchenaid pasta maker.

    Fresh pasta takes about 3-4 minutes to cook and dried pasta takes up to 20 minutes to cook; after draining always add the warm pasta to the finished hot accompanying sauce so it will be fully coated with sauce.

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