I love making my own pasta. I don’t do it often, as there simply aren’t enough hours in the day, nor enough of a cool breeze yet at this time of year. In all honesty though, nothing else compares. Once you have that silky, soft, noodle, you’ll not want to go back to store bought again.
But you will. Because you can’t make fresh pasta every day. And if you can, I am moving next door.
I spent a day last week making as many different types as I could handle, because once I’m in the rhythm of something, I may as well keep on keeping on.
The reason for trying the pumpkin was because I literally had a scarce 1/3 of a cup of pumpkin puree from a recent pumpkin baking afternoon and thought, why waste it. Especially since that can of pumpkin puree here in the Mayan Riviera is NOT cheap. Waste not, want not.
Considering I’m not obsessed with pumpkin and would not even call myself a fan, I was a little worried that I wouldn’t like it. I was wrong. The taste in the noodle was very subtle, as was the color. So subtle some might not even be able to tell it’s pumpkin.
Verdict: I loved it. For the pasta dish itself, I hand cut the noodles much thicker, pappardelle size. I made an extremely basic and simple sauce so as to let the noodles shine through.
I used some specialty pasta flour that my Montreal foodie friend gave me a few months back. I also went out and bought some good quality flour to try out. There are a few stores in town now that have the good quality ’00’ flour. This is the type of flour they use in Italy to get those beautiful pizzas and often for pasta also. Since the flour where I am isn’t of the greatest quality, I thought I would try something new. Although, I have made pasta many times before here in Mexico with regular flour and it turns out just fine.
If you don’t have a pasta maker (if not, why not?) you can roll this dough out and hand cut as imperfectly as you like, much like I did in the main picture. If you make too much, you can let them dry and give them to friends. There’s a gift that’ll keep the people talking!
Here is to fresh pasta, made a little more seasonal, in all it’s silkiness and shine.
- 2 cups flour
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 egg
- 2 egg yolks
- 1/3 cup pumpkin puree
- warm water
In a medium size bowl, add flour and salt and whisk to combine and get out lumps. Add egg, egg yolks, and pumpkin puree. Stir until combined. Add a little bit of warm water in just until the dough starts to pull away from the sides and stick together (I usually use about 1/4 cup. You may need more). Transfer to a lightly floured surface and knead for about 5 minutes. Cover with a bowl or plastic and let rest for at least 30 minutes.
Cut dough into quarters.
If you have a pasta roller, roll through the machine from the thickest (mine is “1”) 3 times until moving up numbers. For fresh pasta I never go thinner than “5”. Let dry a little on a rack or a baking sheet for another 30 minutes (this makes it easier to cut).
If you don’t have a pasta roller, roll out with a rolling pin as thin as you can without it ripping. If you are just making regular pasta you don’t have to roll it too thing. But if you are making ravioli or another type of pasta like that, roll it thinner.
Cut to whatever shape you like. Cover until ready to cook. (You can make this earlier in the day and keep covered until ready to boil).
Boil water and cook pasta about 2 minutes after it floats to the top. Remember, fresh pasta cooks very quickly.
**sauce: I simple minced some garlic in a little olive oil and tossed the noodles with parmesan and the oil and that was it. A beautiful sauce needs no heavy sauce masking it, in my opinion.