National Pasta Day is today and what better way to celebrate than with homemade pasta!  If you haven’t had a cheat day yet this week, I highly recommend it be today 🙂

If you don’t mind putting in a little elbow grease and work, homemade pasta is the way to go.  If you’re on a time crunch or just not that interested in cooking, boxed noodles or a heat-and-serve pasta dish is just fine.  My preference is homemade pasta.  Yes, it can be time consuming, but the flavor is incredible, and it has a great texture!

My go-to recipe is for Homemade Egg Noodles.  You do need a stand mixer and pasta attachment for this recipe to work.  You can also use this recipe with a hand cranked pasta maker, but I have yet to try that method.

Start by adding your ingredients to the bowl of the stand mixer.  Attached the dough hook and turn on the mixer to low speed to combine the ingredients and knead the dough.  Slowly add more water while the dough mixes.  You’ll notice if the dough is too dry and not forming a ball and that is your queue to add water.  I slowly drizzle water into the bowl while the mixer is running.  I probably add about ¼ cup total – don’t add too much water at once!  Give the mixer time to stir everything together and form the dough.

Once the dough has pulled away from the sides and formed a ball, turn off the mixer and remove the dough.  Knead the dough by hand on the counter for a few minutes.  Then place the dough in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap.  The dough will sit like this for 20 minutes to rise.

After 20 minutes has passed, remove the dough from the bowl and divide into 4 equal pieces.  Return the dough in the bowl and keep it covered until ready to use.

Attached the pasta roller to the stand mixer.  Adjust the setting to #1 on the pasta roller knob and turn the mixer on to the lowest speeds.  Take one piece of dough and knead by hand to soften.  Then slightly flatten the dough with your hand so it’s roughly the width of the roller attachment.  Feed the dough through – it will come out in a smooth, flattened sheet.  If you have any rips or holes in the pasta sheet, knead the dough together again and continue to follow this step until you have one continuous sheet without any holes or rips.

Once you have that, adjust the knob setting to #2 on the pasta roller and feed the dough through again.  This will yield a slightly thinner piece of pasta.  Next, adjust the knob setting to #3 on the past roller and fee the dough through again, to get an even thinner piece of pasta.  Continue to adjust the knob setting and feed the pasta through until you have your desired thickness.  Then set the pasta sheet aside and continue to create sheets out of the rest of the dough.

Now you want to remove the pasta roller attachment and add the pasta cutter attachment to the stand mixer.  This will cut the pasta sheets into the shape of your choosing.

I like to cut the sheets of dough in half, so they are easier to work with.  Turn the stand mixer on to the lowest speed.  Start to feed one sheet of pasta through the cutter.  Make sure to hold the dough as you feed it through on one side, so it doesn’t stick and also hold the cut noodles that are coming out on the other side (you might need more hands and a helper for this step).  Drape the noodles over a drying rack to sit while you cut the rest of the noodles.  Try to not overlap the noodles or they will stick together.

Once all noodles are cut, bring a pot of salted water to a boil.  Add the noodles and cook for about 6-7 minutes or until al dente.  Drain and serve with your favorite pasta sauce.  Delicious!

The recipe can be found here.

My favorite sauce is Homemade Alfredo Sauce.  It’s quick, easy, and super yummy!

Start by melting the butter, heavy cream, and cream cheese in a saucepan until completely melted and combined.

Next, add the garlic and seasoning.  Then, add your parmesan cheese.

Bring this to a simmer and cook for about 5 minutes for the sauce to thicken.  Then spoon over noodles and enjoy.  Simple as that!

The recipe can be found here.

No pasta meal is complete without some kind of bread for dipping.  Breadsticks, garlic bread, toast – you name it!  I’m partial to Focaccia and have a great recipe for Homemade Focaccia Bread.

You don’t necessarily need a stand mixer to make this bread but it sure makes mixing the dough easier 🙂  Add warm water, sugar and yeast to the bowl of a stand mixer.  The warm water will cause the yeast to get foamy and that’s when you know it’s time to add the rest of the ingredients.

Make sure you are using the dough hook and turn the mixer on low.  Slowly add the flour, olive oil, and salt.  Increase the speed and let the mixer do the work!  The mixer will continue to knead the dough and once the dough forms a ball and pulls away from the sides of the bowl you can turn the mixer off.

Coat the inside of a bowl with a small amount of olive oil.  Remove the dough from the stand mixer and place inside the bowl.  Turn to coat with oil.  Then cover the bowl with a towel and let the dough sit for about 40-50 minutes to rise.  You want the dough to double in size.

After the dough has doubled in size, preheat the oven and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Remove the dough from the bowl and place on a floured surface.  You want to flatten the dough to about ½ inch thick.  It can either be rectangular or circular in shape.  I like to use my hands to flatten the dough, but a rolling pin also works well.

Spray plastic wrap with cooking spray and place over the top of the dough.  Let the dough sit for another 15-20 minutes to rise.

After this time has passed, go ahead and throw away the plastic wrap and transfer the dough to the baking sheet.  Use your fingers to poke dents all over the dough.  Next, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with sea salt and rosemary.

Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the dough is golden brown and cooked through.  Remove from the oven, slice, and serve.  Sooooo good!  It’s warm and soft from the oven, and a perfectly salty side to your pasta dish.  Yum!

The recipe can be found here.

Will you be celebrating National Pasta Day?  What’s your favorite pasta?

Happy Cooking!

 

 

 

 

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