Youngest Daughter has been bugging me to make fresh pasta for months now. Way back in the 90s, I bought a pasta maker off of an infomercial -- the Popeil Automatic Pasta Maker. Laugh all you want, this thing works! So we had planned to get together today and make fresh pasta and watch movies and hang out and veg.
Unfortunately, she had the stomach flu last week and caught a cold yesterday -- yep, she's typhoid Mary -- so she came over and I babied her and I made pasta while she watched me. Hmmmm, is that any different than usual?
I did my homework yesterday. Dug out the pasta maker and all the parts, washed everything, spent hours watching the instructional video and writing down recipes, and futilely looked for the actual cookbook that came with it. I even spent time in the garage going through my cookbook bookshelf, thinking maybe the cookbook was there. It probably is. However, I kept getting sidetracked and stopping to read and setting aside other cookbooks that I wanted to look through. And I finally gave up. Here's a picture of my cookbook shelves in the garage ...
... so you can see why I didn't find the pasta maker cookbook. I have a few cookbooks on my baker's rack in the kitchen -- usually the books I'm currently cooking out of. I like to rotate them and give them each a chance to live in the house sometimes with the rest of the family.
Back to the mother-daughter day and pasta making. I had picked up a package of Semolina Flour that is made of Durum Wheat and contains "an exceptionally high percentage of gluten, which is what makes a pasta strand stretch and not break apart when cooking." At least that's what it says on the package. No Semolinas were injured in the making of this pasta. Most of the flour I used is standard All Purpose Flour with some Semolina mixed in for flavor.
The recipe includes All Purpose Flour, Semolina Flour, 2 eggs, salt, olive oil and water. You can substitute things like carrot juice or liquified spinach for some of the water to make it more flavorful and colorful. One I plan to try, since I am overrun with lemons from our tree right now, is lemon pepper pasta. Yum. With sautéed chicken and garlic. Just yum!
Everything gets mixed right in the pasta maker. It came with about 24 different dies for all types of pasta noodles and we chose to extrude through the fettucine die. Pasta making in progress ...
I ended up making two batches of fettuccine noodles so we could have some for dinner this week as well as lunch today.
Here's a side view ... isn't it beautiful?
I boiled about half of one batch for our lunch, which ended up being a lot more than it looked like. And fresh pasta cooks so much faster than dried. This took just over 4 minutes. We melted a little butter over it and sprinkled it with grated Colby Jack and Parmesan cheeses. It was so good!
Then we made cups of Celestial Seasonings Mandarin Orange Spice decaf tea, retired to the couches, put in "Evan Almighty" and cuddled with Miles and Louie. A lovely day, even for a sickly kid. :-)