Nothing says Italy like good food, and nothing says Italian food like pasta. So after I made homemade sauce and meatballs, I knew I had to take the plunge and try my hand at pasta making. I was afraid to attempt it on my own, so I called Mrs. Walk and said, "Let's have a pasta party!" She and I made the pasta together while our husbands
played pool and drank beer patiently waited for dinner.
Homemade Pasta Noodles
Fresh basil, chopped
Mound flour in center of a large work surface or large bowl. Make a well in the middle and crack eggs into the well. Using a fork, beat the eggs and slowly incorporate flour, beginning with inner rim of well. When flour is incorporated, gather dough together to form a rounded mass, adding flour as needed to handle.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook, knead dough on low speed until dough is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Wrap dough in plastic wrap, and let rest for 30 minutes at room temperature before using.
Divide dough into 4 pieces; keep 3 pieces covered with a slightly damp kitchen towel. Before handling the dough, dust your hands, the machine and any accessories with flour and lightly flour your work surface. Flatten dough to a shape somewhat narrower than pasta machine opening and feed through machine's widest setting (7 on my machine). As pasta emerges, gently support it with your palm and guide it onto the work surface. Fold dough in thirds, and roll out again, using flour as necessary. Repeat process until dough emerges in smooth and supple, about 8-10 times.
Now it's time to thin the dough. Dust pasta lightly with flour to prevent sticking, if necessary. Roll dough progressively through the thinner settings, without folding, 2 times per setting, until you have reached your desired thickness. (We did ours to 4.) If pasta sheet becomes too long to work with easily, cut it into 2 pieces. Allow pasta to rest for 10 minutes before cutting.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and lightly dust with flour. Feed the pasta sheets through the cutting attachment, and lay flat on baking sheet. Repeat with remaining pasta sheets. If not cooking immediately, tightly cover with plastic wrap and put in the refrigerator.