Pasta making for beginners
Next week the Children’s Summer Cookery School I’m running begins. Each day has a different theme and one of these is Italian. It’s fair to say the children are very much looking forward to the day as we’ll be making pizza, focaccia, lemonade, ice cream and pasta. For one of the children it’s his 11th birthday and he’s so pleased he’ll making his favourite type of food on his birthday!
Part of my business ethos is to make food and cookery accessible to all and I want to show the children that you don’t need a pasta machine to make pasta. All you need is flour, egg and a rolling pin. You can make the dough directly on a clean table by making a well in the flour and cracking in the egg but as each child will be using a smaller quantity of flour we’ll be making it in bowls.
This recipe is great for fine motor skills and experimenting with shapes. The dough could also be dyed using different colours. By using spinach juice you can turn it green and tomato juice will turn it red.
If you have a pastry wheel cutter or a pizza cutter it does help with cutting the dough. Alternatively use a non-serated knife and rather than dragging the blade through the dough press the blade into the dough to cut. By making orecchiette shaped pasta (looks a bit like a red blood cell) you wouldn’t even need a knife. Just roll the dough into a small ball and make a thumb indent in the middle. If you’re looking for a site showing different hand moulded pasta shapes I can highly recommend this site.
Makes around 130g fresh pasta
80g plain or pasta ’00’ flour
1) Mix together the egg and flour until you have a dough.
2) Knead the dough for 5 minutes then leave to rest for 10 minutes.
3) On a well floured surface roll the dough out until it is as thin as you can make it. Cut shapes and lengths from the dough. You could even use small biscuit/icing cutters if you wanted to different shapes. Flower shaped pasta anyone?
4) Either use fresh or allow to dry on a floured surface. When ready to cook boil in lightly salted water for 5-8 minutes.