I have made pasta for a couple of years now, but it is always just with plain flour. I finally decided to branch out and try a flavored pasta. I did go to my favorite Italian cookbook – The Silver Spoon. It is such a wonderful read, not to mention that the recipes come out really well. The standard ratio to make pasta is either one egg per 100 gms of flour and that is good for one person. Of course, I should mention that I always make extra – leftovers are so great!.
I was trying to think of what to flavor my pasta with and then saw that I had the red curry Malaysian spice paste and decided I would try to make it. It looked beautiful drying on the rack with the little flecks of chili in the pasta strands. I made a simple olive oil and fresh basil sauce to go with it. The whole outcome was simple marvelous as you could taste the spice notes of the curry paste and the basil complimented it wonderfully. I would say that having a pasta machine makes the rolling out of the sheets and cutting it really easy.
I cam across this website via thekitchn.com that has a lot of variations on just plain pasta. The picture speaks volumes. The meal itself starts off great when there is color around. I would think the Indian festival of Holi should incorporate colored pasta as a food end to splashing of color :-).
Serves 4 with generous portions
Preparation time :
- 3.5 cups plain flour
- 2 large eggs
- 4 tablespoons Red Curry Paste
- 4 tablespoons cold water
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
I use my trusty KitchenAid mixer. I put the flour in and make a well in the center. Beat the eggs slightly and then pour them into the center of the well. Start with the beater blade to incorporate the flour and eggs. Once they have incorporated switch to the dough hook. At this point add the red curry paste, olive oil and sea salt. Knead until the dough comes together and gives to a little pressure. Add the water a tablespoon at a time only if your dough is dry and is not holding together.
If you are doing this without a kitchen aid mixer. Clean your counter top. Make a mound of the flour and then make a well in the center. Put the lightly beaten eggs in the center and then using a stirring motion start to combine the flour. Once you have done this then start to knead the dough adding the curry paste, oil and salt. Add the water as needed to make a dough that gives to a little pressure.
Roll the dough out into a log and cut it up into 8 equal portions. Roll each portion into a ball and then cover them with a clean kitchen towel. Let them rest for about 10 minutes.
Rolling the dough
1. Set your roller at the widest (on the kitchenaid it is #1). Flatten the first ball and feed it into the pasta roller. Once it is rolled out fold it into thirds, with the two outer flaps overlapping. rotate by 90 degrees and feed it into the roller again. Repeat 5 times which should get your sheet of pasta pretty even and smooth. Do not worry if the pasta sheet is not a perfect rectangle.
2. Reduce the setting on the pasta roller (#2 on kitchenaid). Feed the pasta sheet through this setting. If you find your dough sticky, just dust on a little flour on it. Reduce the setting on the pasta roller and repeat. I went down to #4 setting as I was making fettuccine.
3. Change the pasta roller for the fettuccine cutter (if you do not have one then just cut it with a pizza cutter on a cutting board). Hang the pasta to dry on a pasta drying rack or a clean broom handle balanced between two chairs.
4. Repeat the process with the rest of the dough balls. Let the pasta dry for about 10-12 minutes.
5. Bring 2 quarts of water to a rolling boil. Put your pasta in and let it cook for 2-3 minutes. Drain the pasta leaving a little of the cooking water behind. This helps the sauce that you are making adhere to it.
I made a simple olive oil, basil and sun-dried tomato sauce to go with it.