Homemade Whole Wheat Pasta
Who doesn't love pasta?
Growing up in an Italian household pasta was on our table at least once, if not twice a week. My family has many pasta sauce recipes that have been passed down from generation to generation, BUT amazingly there are no recipes for homemade pasta! I have tried so many different ways to make homemade pasta using different flours, mixing techniques, and ingredients, but I have finally narrowed it down to one recipe that I really like.
Homemade pasta differs (in a good way!) from store bought pasta, because it has a much softer texture, takes less time to cook, and is more flavorful. By using an egg-based recipe (like the one I am sharing with you today), you won't get as much of the al dente bite that most store-bought pastas can give you. However, this recipe still gives you great texture and a lightness to the pasta. There are many different ways homemade pasta can be made, but for me the biggest differences are the types of flour and whether it has eggs included or not. I LOVE using eggs in my pasta, because the richness of eggs add a lot of depth and flavor. Instead of using a mix of flours (wheat, semolina, all-purpose, or cake) I use 100% whole-wheat flour, because it creates a heartier pasta and adds a nice earthy, rustic flavor that just feels homemade! This pasta can also be made ahead of time and frozen...when you are ready to make pasta for family and friends, just pull it straight from the freezer and throw it right into the pot!
Homemade Whole Wheat Pasta
2 cups whole-wheat flour
3 eggs; room temperature
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
*Prepare a clean surface to work on; this could be the counter, a large cutting board, or a silicone sheet like the ones you use to roll out pie dough
*Scoop the flour onto the clean surface in a large pile
*Use your hand to made a well in the middle of the flour
*Crack the eggs into the middle of the well
*Pour the olive oil and the salt in the well also
*Use a four to break up the eggs and whisk the ingredients in the center lightly
*Then, using the fork, keep whisking the egg mixture around the flour while also incorporating the flour into the eggs
*There will be a point when it all started to become a large mess and that is when you want to switch to using your hands
*Bring the mixture together to start to form a ball
*Use your hands to kneed the dough to incorporate all of the flour; if it's sticky add more flour
*Kneed the dough for about 5-7 minutes, or until it become smooth and satiny
*Cover the ball of dough with plastic wrap and let sit in the fridge for about 20 minutes or a couple hours
*Remove the dough from the fridge and let it come up to room temperature for about 10 minutes
*Cut the dough into quarters
*If you are using a pasta machine then you can follow the directions at this point; I have a KitchenAid attachment
*Take one of the pieces of the dough and lightly sprinkle it with flour
*With the machine on 1 roll the pasta through the roller
*Fold in half; sprinkle with flour; and roll again
*Then switch to level 3 and roll once
*Switch to level 5 and roll once
*Switch to level 7 and roll once
*Switch the attachment to the spaghetti attachment (or whichever shape you like)
*Place the long sheet of dough through to make the shape of spaghetti; make sure to catch it with your arm as it comes out and not to let it fall all over the flour
*After it goes through the machine toss it with a little bit of flour and lay flat to dry on a towel or if you have a hanging rack (or even a hanger) to dry
*I let mine dry for about an hour and then either cook it or freeze it!
*When you want to cook the pasta make sure to add a good amount of salt to the boiling water
*Add in the spaghetti; this will only take a few minutes to cook
*Toss in a pan with sauce and allow the pasta to cook in the sauce for a minute or two
*Sprinkle with cheese, fresh herbs, and serve!