Make it Yourself...Pasta Making Hints

Amish Noodle Day
We love homemade pasta. I have rolled these out by hand, like my mother-in-law - but I purchased the roller – cutter set for my Kitchenaid mixer, and they are great! Once I got a system down (where to hang the noodles, that I need a cutting board next to the mixer so I can flour my dough between rollings, etc. ) I actually enjoy making noodles for the freezer. So much so, I don’t buy noodles anymore. My husband likes to help if he’s home because it’s fun and he was raised on homemade noodles. They are much, much cheaper and better than purchased fresh or frozen noodles.  Fresh noodles cook quickly; if I freeze them, I don't thaw them before cooking.  They keep up to 6 weeks in the freezer - I never have them that long.
Watch a few U-Tube pasta making videos from Kitchenaid before you start. Then I’ll tell you what I didn’t learn from the videos. Leave yourself a couple of hours – they aren’t that much work, but there is some waiting time.
Farm eggs are not sized, so I have learned to put them in a measuring cup until I get the amount I want. Then I add flour accordingly. If I have ¾ cup, that’s good and I use about 11 ½ ounces flour. If I crack that last egg and have about 7/8 cup, I use 12 ounces of flour or so. Don’t leave out the salt – they taste yucky.
Your dough ball after you take it out of the mixer will be very stiff and hard, that’s OK, it will soften a lot as it rests. When you cut the dough into the first pieces, it shouldn’t have large holes in it – it’s not kneaded enough if it does – put it back and knead some more.
My Pasta drying before cutting on a clothes rack
I cut my dough into 5-6 pieces that are about 3 ounces each – in a recipe that’s about equal to 2 ounces of purchased dry noodles. I found that cutting the dough (I weigh it) before I let it rest, I can just start rolling after 20 minutes. This amount is right for the 2 of us, if I have company, I just cook more. This size of dough is a good size for getting into the pot without sticking together.
I purchased a $5 stainless flour shaker that is swell for flouring the dough between times through the rollers. If the dough is a little sticky, I lay it on my board, shake a little flour over it and it’s ready to roll.
After flattening the dough a little, I feed it through the rollers, flour one side, fold the unfloured side to the inside in thirds, then turn so the open end goes through the roller and roll again. I didn’t understand this fold and turn step at first, but having the folds on the sides as you feed them through helps keep your dough straight on the sides which helps when cutting it into noodles.
The first rolling and folding is also a kneading operation. Don’t skimp on it – you don’t want crumbly noodles – rolling helps align the gluten strands and makes better noodles.
You need to dry your pasta dough between rolling and cutting if you use a pasta machine of any kind.  I use either these drying racks or a clean clothes drying rack.
To get your noodles to run through the cutters successfully, you need to let them rest until the dough is almost dry to the touch, but not crackly. It takes a few times to get the feel of this, but the worst thing that happens is that you have to pull some of them apart by hand. If this happens, let the rest dry a little more. By the time you’ve made your first batch of noodles, you’ll have a pretty good feel for it.
Egg noodles actually freeze very well. Swirled into single-portion nests, you can freeze them separately and then bag them for long-term (at least a couple of months) freezing. When you want to cook your frozen pasta, it can go straight from the freezer into the boiling water, and you probably won’t notice a difference in cooking time.

Frozen pasta maintains its form, and its fresh flavor, better than the dried version
Next Wednesday, we'll give you our basic egg noodle recipe and methods.

3 comments:

  1. Oh good. This is on my learn to do list for this year! Thank you, Angela

    ReplyDelete
  2. I have been making noodles this week too. I do it all by hand though and dry them flat on the floured counter of my antique Hoosier Cabinet. When dry enough not ti be tacky I halve the big 15" circles and stack them up sliced edges even, roll them tightly up together and slice into the desired width with a very sharp knife. I am freezing them in bulk quantities for the weekend birthday party. Your way looks like fun too. Thanks for sharing I always enjoy seeing what you girls are up too! dkc

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Diane
      I also make noodles by hand...especially when I just want a few for lunch and don't have any frozen. As a matter of fact; I plan to make them tomorrow.
      I will have that recipe on the blog soon, probably close to yours. I also roll mine and slice them when I make them by hand...as my mother-in-law taught me!
      However, I'm only making a few! Do you serve yours on mashed potatoes as everyone here does?

      Delete

Hi...we'd love to hear from you.