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one food item i’ve longed to make at home is fresh pasta. two ingredients – flour and eggs. so basic. how hard could it be?
many years ago, mike received a pasta maker for christmas with the hopes of making fresh pasta, particularly ravioli. it is a beautiful machine. trouble is, you need a particularly solid surface or counter top with just the right “lip” for the clamp to grab onto. if you don’t get it really solidly tied down, it is a real pain in the ass. our previous two homes haven’t had the right space to set up the machine. because it wasn’t really working for us, the machine went into the basement and we went back to buying dried pasta from a box.
when we started trying to eat less preserved/boxed food, i started buying pasta from a seller at west seattle farmer’s market. it is yummy, but the price adds up. i couldn’t help but feel like i should at least try to find a way to make it work at home.
and…well…perhaps i should have called this post failure #1.
i followed the instructions as described in this video on the williams sonoma site. it seemed easy enough. the pasta maker was easy to set up and i managed to get it pretty well secured to the counter. but, i’d forgotten about the other difficulties. like needing four arms to deal with the dough and the way the dough will stick itself really easily if the sheets are allowed to touch. the demonstrator really breezes through that part in the video.
i wasted at least 1/2 the dough because of my own screw ups. my most common error was not having enough flour on my work surface and/or the pasta maker and not noticing when the pasta was folding on itself and creating a big sticky lump of dough.
nonetheless, i started to get the hang of it eventually. i even managed to get enough fettucine for a meal for mike and i, with enough left over for a meal for one of us later in the week.
it tasted pretty delish. and, i’m stubborn enough that i want to figure this out, so i’m going to try again soon. maybe even next weekend.
things i learned:
1) you really can’t have too much flour on the work surface and pasta maker.
2) it is much easier to work with smaller pieces of dough. i have my greatest successes when i worked with 1/8 of the dough rather than 1/4 as shown on the williams sonoma video.
ultimately, this photo describes how i dealt with the whole debacle.
cocktail to accompany your pasta failure
1 part stoli vanilla vodka
2 parts pomegranate juice
any homemade pasta makers out there have any tips?