Try this staple recipe for versatile yet basic homemade pasta dough.
This recipe uses a pasta machine.
400 g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
2 teaspoons of salt
4 x 70 g eggs
To make and rest the dough:
1. Combine the flour and the salt in the large bowl and then create a well in the middle of the flour.
2. Crack the eggs into the small bowl and then pour them into the well in the centre of the flour.
3. Use your hands to incorporate the eggs into the flour until the dough clings together and feels quite springy.
4. Tip the dough onto a clean, dry workbench. Knead the dough for a few minutes. Wrap it in plastic wrap and let it rest for up to an hour at room temperature.
To roll the dough:
1. Set up the pasta machine next to a clean dry space on your workbench. You can also spread clean tea towels next to the rollers to catch the pasta on.
2. Unwrap the dough and cut it into six pieces. Keep one piece out and fold the others back in the plastic wrap to stay moist.
3. Roll the dough into a ball and press it down on the board. Flatten and shape it into a rectangle about 8 cm wide.
4. Pass the dough through the widest setting of the pasta machine.
5. Fold the dough into three, then turn it 90 degrees and roll it through again. Do this three or four times, folding as necessary to keep the edges from getting too ragged. (This process is called ‘laminating’.)
6. Set the rollers to the next widest setting and pass the pasta through.
7. Continue changing the settings and passing the lengths of dough through until the dough has passed through the second thinnest setting.
8. If the dough starts to stick, sprinkle a pinch of flour onto your hands and smooth it onto the strips of dough. Be very sparing with the flour.
9. If the dough gets too long, you can cut it into two or three pieces, and then roll each piece separately.
10. Cover the pasta with tea towels to avoid its drying out.
11. Clean the pasta machine by brushing it with a dry pastry brush. Tip it upside down to get any dried bits of pasta out. Never wash your pasta machine with water as the rollers will rust.
Recipe provided by the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation.