Of course, we love homemade pasta .. who wouldn’t? But, I had not one single place to attach the pasta maker at the house in Texas. The only table we had in the house had edges that kinda had a lip on the underside and the pasta maker wouldn’t attach there. I didn’t have a bar that would work and I made pasta a few times there with the Kitchen Aid attachment but I like the hand crank one so much better.
One thing I have found is that if I want to add “mix ins” like chopped fresh herbs or even a bit of boiled, mashed beets, the hand crank machine works better than my Kitchen Aid attachment.
Plus . . you know how I think. If there’s ever a time when there’s no power and I wanted to make pasta, so long as I’m mixing it by hand, cranking it by hand and have a gas stove (which I don’t have), I’m good to go.
One more thing – making pasta is such a fun project to do with kids. Chad used to love making it with me when he was a kid. It’s really kinda fail proof and with just a little supervision, they can do most of it without help.
The pasta maker I use is a Marcato/Atlas and it’s pretty old. In fact, I think I found this in some of Vince’s things and if I’m remembering correctly, he bought it way before we ever met and he was going to use it to make things with Fimo clay. He had never used it, I asked if I could use it to make pasta and . . it became my pasta maker. Poor Vince. I take all the good stuff.
This is all it takes! And, you actually can use all purpose flour. You don’t have to use Semolina or Durum flour. I have it, so I used it but I’ve made pasta with whatever I have on hand and it’s just fine. In fact, I’m not even sure I can tell the difference when using special extra fine flour or storebought AP flour. The durum flour will give it a yellow color but so will three large eggs with bright orange yolks.
Every time I do this . . at this point, I’m saying . . why didn’t I use the mixer? My little “well” is never deep enough to hold three eggs. By the time I have it all nice and smooth, I’m happy I used my hands. There’s just something about mixing pasta and kneading bread that I much prefer using my hands rather than a mixer.
There are two settings on my pasta maker. The first is thin, kinda like angel hair pasta. I make that if I’m going to eat it right away but it breaks so easily that if I’m going to be saving it for later, I make the second cut, which is more of a fettuccine type pasta.
For my lunch, I made the angel hair but for the rest, I used the wider cut.
There’s the whole setup – mess and all! 🙂
I have now divided the pasta from the drying rack into three packages – one or tomorrow or the next day and two for the freezer. If Vince is here, I’ll cook both packages (and I hope he is here soon!) but if he isn’t, I’ll just cook one package when I want pasta.
My lunch: I made a cream sauce with garlic and rehydrated black truffles. I wasn’t terribly impressed with them. They tasted like mushrooms but not much like black truffles.
I did throw a few short pieces of the wider pasta in with mine to cook so if you see wide ones that don’t look too skinny, that’s why.
It was a delicious lunch, if I do say so myself!
As I was rolling out the pasta and hanging it on the drying rack, the thought occurred to me: Boots! How will I ever do this with a cat in the house? One of us will have to go to the sun room. I can either roll out the pasta and cut it in the sun room or Boots can hang out in there while I’m doing it at the table. Or, less likely scenario – I’ll say “NO” and he’ll go find something else to do! 🙂
I can’t wait to see that cat!