Ricetta Base Per Pasta in Casa (Basic Recipe for Homemade Pasta)
HAND ROLLED: Mound part of the flour in a large board or other working surface and make a well at center. Pour in eggs. With the aid of a fork, mix eggs and flour very gradually until a soft paste forms. With your finger mix in enough flour to make a firm but not too hard, dough. Knead for about 5 minutes, till dough is smooth. Place in an unfloured dish; cover with an inverted dish and let it rest in the refrigerator for about ½ hour. Take half of the dough, knead it lightly, and shape into a ball. Place on a well floured board. With the palms of your hands, flatten the ball, keeping the round shape, and sprinkle with flour. With the rolling pin, begin to thin the disk out in all directions, trying not to lose the round shape. Continue to sprinkle with flour as it becomes necessary, so that the dough does not stick to the pin. As soon as the disk of dough is thin enough to be rolled AROUND the rolling pin do so.* Starting from the end farthest from you, begin to roll the dough toward you, using small, even strokes back and forth, at the same time you swiftly slide your hands inward to the centre and outward to the edges of the pin. When the sheet is all rolled around the pin, PUSH the pin away from you at arm's length; then vigorously ROLL it back towards you, so that one side of the sheet flaps several times over the board. Turn the pin 90 degrees and unroll the sheet from it. Repeat from * as many times as needed for the desired thinness. Repeat with the other half of the dough and use as directed in each individual recipe. SERVES: 6 to 16, depending on the different uses made of it
WITH A HAND OPERATED MACHINE: Make a dough, using the method described board, mixing until they have a very firm dough. There is no need to make it smooth because the machine will take care of that. Place in an unfloured dish; cover with an inverted dish and let it rest in the refrigerator for about ½ hour. Take ¼th of the dough at a time and begin the thinning. With the rollers set at the first slot (farthest apart), feed the dough between the rollers while turning the crank. If some of the dough sticks to the rollers or to the machine, that means the dough is too soft and more flour must be added. Fold and feed with the rollers set at the same slot 3 or 4 times, until the sheet comes out in one piece (but not too smooth). Move on to the second slot and feed the sheet only once. Keeping on moving till the desired thinness is achieved. For lasagna or fettucini you stop at the next to last slot. For taglierini or calzonicchi, go through the last slot once, wait a few seconds, then feed the sheet into the last slot again. (Pasta made with only eggs and flour tends to be very elastic and it tends to shrink. However, the second time through it keeps the shape better.) Repeat with the remaining pasta, using ¼th of the original quantity each time. Use as directed in the individual recipe.
*for electric pasta makers, follow the manufacturer's directions, but most machines will not provide sheet pasta for lasagna, ravoli, etc.
_The Classic Cuisine of the Italian Jews_
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