A few date nights back (okay, a lot of date nights back…so behind on blogging this!) we made homemade pasta noodles for date night! Actually, he was the one doing all the teaching! For Valentine’s Day, I got him a pasta machine because one of his resolutions this year was to learn to make pasta! And he actually did it prior to the pasta machine, but it was thick because he was using a makeshift rolling-pin. Anyways, making your own noodles is a lot of fun and I think it’s a great activity for at home date nights!
A great tip for beginners (like me) suggested by my boyfriend is to use an extra large mixing bowl for mixing the eggs and flour together. Pour the flour into the mixing bowl and form a well for the eggs.
Using a fork, break the yolks…
Slowly incorporate the flour into the eggs by stirring in a little bit of flour…
until the flour is fully incorporated and you have a somewhat doughy texture. DIY tip: At this stage, you can use your hands to mix everything together to form a ball of dough. If the dough is too tacky or wet, add more flour.
Now that you’ve formed a dough ball, cover (or wrap) the ball of dough and let it rest for a minimum of 20 minutes.
Pound it again (or use that rolling-pin) to get it as flat as you can! The goal of this step is to ensure that the dough goes through the pasta machine with ease.
Here’s a great tip that he suggested! Cut the dough into strips because as you’re rolling the dough through the pasta machine, it tends to expand so cutting them into smaller sections will ensure that they don’t get stuck or overlap in the rolling process.
Now on to the fun part! The rolling…ps, start off at one of the higher number settings (7 in my case) for the inaugural roll!
Look at how long it’s gotten!
Keep rolling the dough through the pasta machine making sure to change to dial setting to a lower number depending on the type of noodle you want to make.
When the dough gets thin enough, off to the cutting! We made fettuccine and angel hair pasta!
Be sure to lay and flour your newly made noodles out to dry (or hang on a pasta rack) before even attempting to make little “nests” of pasta because they will stick together!
After we made the noodles, I made DIYed the pasta sauce using one of my favorite Paula Deen recipes! All you need is ground meat, a couple of cans of tomatoes, diced onions, and a handful of sliced grape tomatoes…
for a delicious quick, effortless, and homemade pasta sauce!
By the way, do these ingredients look familiar?! Well this pasta sauce is actually the meat sauce for my favorite Paula Deen lasagna! It’s super meaty, just the way he likes it! Hahah :)
What are some of your favorite activities to do on date night?
Homemade Pasta Noodles (via Mario Batali)
- 3 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 4 extra large eggs
- Mound the flour in the center of a large wooden cutting board. Make a well in the middle of the flour, add the eggs. Using a fork, beat together the eggs and begin to incorporate the flour starting with the inner rim of the well. As you incorporate the eggs, keep pushing the flour up to retain the well shape (do not worry if it looks messy). The dough will come together in a shaggy mass when about half of the flour is incorporated.
- Start kneading the dough with both hands, primarily using the palms of your hands. Add more flour, in 1/2-cup increments, if the dough is too sticky. Once the dough is a cohesive mass, remove the dough from the board and scrape up any left over dry bits. Lightly flour the board and continue kneading for 3 more minutes. The dough should be elastic and a little sticky. Continue to knead for another 3 minutes, remembering to dust your board with flour when necessary. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and set aside for 20 minutes at room temperature. Roll and form as desired.
for pasta sauce recipe, click here.