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Flavor From Scratch: Fresh Whole Wheat Pasta

8.14.2015

Fresh Whole Wheat Pasta



I'm addicted to pasta. It's a real problem. Don't judge. You'll understand once you make it. At least I'll tell myself that. It will help me sleep at night.

The addiction started when my husband, Travis, got me a pasta machine earlier this year for my birthday. It wasn't just a wrapped present though. It was an experience. Knowing my love for food, Travis set up a food challenge for me with bins full of "mystery" ingredients for an appetizer, entrée, and dessert (food fans will know this is, of course, based on a popular food challenge show). In each bin, he included a food related gadget to help with my quest, including a pasta machine. Then he gave me some extra money and the charge to go shopping for additional items I may need for my courses.

Now, any normal person would probably say, "Hmm. He gave you food. Then gave you money so you had to grocery shop. Then he made you make dinner. How is that a birthday present?"

My response: "It's only like the best birthday present ever!"


Yeah I'm weird. But come on, super cute and thoughtful present for a chef wannabe like me. There's no getting around that.


Over the months my love of pasta has grown exponentially. And again, Travis came to the rescue to make me an *awesome* pasta drying rack (see above picture). It's just fueling my addiction. Bad news for my waist... good news for my happiness. Just sayin' it's probably worth it. And by probably I mean definitely.


Travis has actually become the go-to pasta roller. You can see him above working his magic. I can't say I mind. I mean who doesn't love a man that can cook??


FRESH WHOLE WHEAT PASTA
prep time: 40-45 minutes (including 30 minute rest); cook time: 2-5 minutes
serves: 4-6 people

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup water
  • pinch of salt

DIRECTIONS
For the dough:
  1. Mix together the 2 types of flour and pinch of salt (to taste). Mound the mixture up on a flat surface. Create a well, or hole, in the middle of the flour.
  2. Crack the eggs into the well and scramble them, making sure not to let them pour out the side of the mound. Add the water (start with 1/4 cup) to the well and mix that into the egg mixture. *You can also mix the water and eggs in a separate bowl then pour it into the well all together*
  3. Start bringing the flour from the walls of the well into the egg mixture with a fork. Eventually you will end up with a dough you can knead. If the dough is not coming together, slowly add more water until it forms a dough.
  4. Knead the dough until it forms an elastic, but not super sticky dough ball. This will probably take at least 5-6 minutes of kneading. Wrap in plastic wrap.
  5. Let the dough sit for 20-30 minutes.
To roll out the dough:
  1. Once rested, cut the dough into about 4 pieces to make it easier to work with. 
  2. Lightly flour each piece of the dough before putting it through the pasta machine at the lowest level (level 0 on mine).
  3. You will put the dough through the pasta machine at the lowest level a total of 4 more times, folding it into thirds before every run through the machine (see above picture) and lightly flouring the outside if it is sticky. Every run, put the dough through the opposite way (the folded, flat edges should be facing the sides of the pasta machine). This helps create a nice flat edge.
  4. Put the dough through, setting the pasta machine up one setting for each run, until you reach the desired thickness.
  5. Use an attachment to cut the dough into the desired shape, cut by hand or leave as sheets for lasagna
  6. At this point you can let the pasta dry and refrigerate for another time or put immediately into boiling water to cook for 2-5 minutes depending on the thickness and width of your pasta.

NOTES
This recipe is actually only 2/3 whole wheat flour. I find that it helps keep the pasta a little lighter but feel free to use all whole wheat flour. You may need to add more liquid to the dough if you do this.

My dough is usually a little drier than other recipes I've seen. This never seems to be a problem once it rests and is put through the pasta machine. 

We ended up at a level 5 thickness for our fettuccine but we usually will end up on a level 7 for regular spaghetti.

If you don't have a pasta machine, you can still make pasta! Follow the steps to make the dough then roll out the dough by hand. You'll need some muscle for that task but on the plus side you can skip your workout for the day you make it!



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2 Comments:

At August 14, 2015 , Blogger Karen Walker said...

The story behind the gift was perfect! He has set the stage for next year's birthday! The bar is pretty high. :)

 
At August 17, 2015 , Blogger Steph said...

He did do a great job with this present!

 

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