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It was another weekend spent at Flautamom’s (aka Andy) house. These are the best, since it is when we have the time to experiment in the kitchen and indulge our culinary curiosities. We’ve been wanting to make pasta from scratch for awhile, so this seemed like the perfect opportunity.

Cin brought out an apron for me to borrow (because I love to cook in ruffles!) and Andy pulled out her handy (and beautiful) Kitchen Aid Mixer. I totally have kitchen appliance envy. I need to get me one of these!!

Andy mixed together the ingredients in a large bowl and let Mr. Kitchen Aid mixer do the work.

Recipe for dough

2 C. Semolina Flour

2 C. Whole Wheat Flour

2 tbs. oil

6 eggs

up to 1/2 C of water, add slowly until the dough properly pulls together

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Next she switched the mixer attachment to the kneading attachment and we let it work for 10 minutes. We three sat around the kitchen counter thinking, without this amazing appliance we would have to take turns kneading the dough to perfect. No wonder my grandmother had amazing arms!

We lifted the dough from the mixer and cut it into four pieces, wrapped them in plastic and let them set, to “get gluten-y” as Andy said.

After they sat and we sat, we pulled out the attachments for rolling the dough. Another thing our Italian nonnas would have had to do by hand.

Following rolling comes the cutting. The part where the dough starts to resemble the finished product. The strands are so pretty and delicate.

Andy is a total pro at strand making. I on the other hand, the apprentice if you will, had to force myself to stop grinning and tune down my excitement. Before taking this shot Cin says: “Look serious”

We made make-shift racks by wrapping some poles in foil and balancing them on the kitchen stools. The strands were left alone for a good 45 minutes. The strands then had to be pulled apart.

Very delicate. Very beautiful.

The three of us hadn’t really thought much past making the actual pasta. How were we going to eat it?? We had a mountain of zucchini, so Andy sauteed a bunch of that. There was a wedge of gruyere in the fridge and some ricotta. We poured some cream in a saucepan, gruyere was shredded and allowed to slowly melt in the pan along with the ricotta. To add a little more green we tossed in a handful of spinach to the mix.

The pasta boiled for 4 minutes and was then tossed together with the creamy cheese sauce and the zucchini.

The entire process did take a couple of hours to complete, although a lot of the work was done by Mr. Kitchen Aid Mixer. Compared to what women would normally have to endure in order to produce some delicious homemade pasta, we hardly lifted a finger. I cannot imagine having to hand crank the pasta shredder while holding the dough in place AND taking care to not break the strands. It definitely gave me a deeper appreciation for what the nonnas went through. It was no wonder women gathered in groups to produce food for their families. The process is made easier with multiple sets of hands, not to mention the company is always the biggest perk!

On most days I cook alone. But the days that are spent in the kitchen with friends takes the pleasure of food to the highest level. Here’s to cooking with my girls!

What was your latest culinary adventure shared with friends??

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