Pasta making is a wonderful weekend activity. Pasta dough is very forgiving, in my experience, and the ingredients are few and simple. The only difficulty is that it can be a time consuming process. It also requires one special tool, which is a pasta roller.
I have never been able to manage to roll my dough out to a thinly enough to make pasta without it. Mine is a hand cranked machine that cost around 50 dollars, but there are electric ones that are stand alone or attach to your stand mixer that get rave reviews. I also bought a cutter set for my hand cranked pasta roller, which makes making fettucini much easier. My masticating juice came with pasta extruding attachments, which allows me to make round spaghetti and other fun shapes that you cannot roll out. I will feature that machine in my homemade spinach pasta recipe.
This recipe will make plenty of noodles or lasagna sheets. They cook much more quickly than dried pasta and the flavor and texture is unbeatable. Best of all, you can freeze your shaped pasta and cook it from frozen, which means that you can work hard one weekend day and enjoy the results of your efforts for many meals to come.
I love pasta dishes that come together in a snap. Shrimp is incredibly fast cooking, so lemony garlicky shrimp scampi paired with fresh pasta felt like a no-brainer. Add a glass of wine and some yummy bread rolls to soak up the extra sauce, plus a simple green salad, and it’s like your home is a fancy Italian restaurant. Enjoy!
1 pound of jumbo shrimp, shelled and deveined
salt and fresh cracked black pepper
3 tablespoons of butter
1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 teaspoon of lemon zest
Juice of 1 medium lemon
1 tablespoon of chopped parsley
Thoroughly dry your shrimp with paper towels. Salt and pepper both sides.
Put a large skilled over medium heat. Put in the butter and olive oil. Once the butter is done foaming, put in your shrimp. Cook the shrimp on one side for a minute, then add the garlic and cook another minute., Flip the shrimp over and cook for another 2 minutes. Take the shrimp out of the pan and set aside in a bowl.
Add the lemon juice and wine to the skillet, and cook until the sauce reduces, about a minute, scraping up the fond (browned bits on the bottom of the pan). Turn off the heat. Add the lemon zest, parsley and shrimp. Serve over your fresh pasta, with bread rolls on the side to help mop up the sauce.
Homemade Fettuccine (recipe credit NIKI ACHITOFF-GRAY from Serious Eats and Nate Gruen, Portsmouth Cooking Instructor)
2 cups of all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting the counter
8 egg yolks
On a clean work surface, place your flour in a mound. Make a large well in the center of the mound. Add your eggs and egg yolks. With a fork, beat them thor
Knead your dough until it feels smooth and elastic. Add more flour if the dough is too wet, or small dribbles of water if the dough is too dry. Wrap the dough tightly in plastic wrap and rest it on the counter for 30 minutes.
Divide your dough into quarters. Rewrap the dough that you are not using while you work with the quarter portion. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pasta dough with a rolling pin to a thickness of about 1/2 or 1/3 inch thick.
With your pasta roller set to its widest setting, pass the dough though. Fold into thirds, and pass it through twice more, folding it into thirds each time. Narrow the roller setting by 1 and repeat the process. Continue reducing the thickness of the roller setting until you reach your desired thickness.
Add your cutting attachment to your pasta roller. Cut your dough into your desired noodle length, then pass the pasta sheet through the pasta cutters. Place the noodles on a lightly floured baking sheet, curl them into nests, and cover with plastic wrap. Repeat with the remaining pasta sheets. Repeat the whole process with your reminding dough quarters.
You can freeze these pasta nests for later use, or cook them now.
To cook: Bring a large pot of generously salted water to a boil. Add your pasta and cook for about 2 minutes, until al dente. Toss with your shrimp scampi, and enjoy!