Fresh Pasta in the food processor
BASIC PLAIN PASTA DOUGH (2 SERVINGS
PER 1 EGG BATCH, CAN BE DOUBLED)
|1 tsp||olive oil|
Making fresh pasta dough is especially easy if you use a food processor. There are endless variations for flavoring the pasta and shaping it. All start with the same basic dough.
A one egg, one cup of flour batch will make two main-dish servings. A full-sized food processor handles a two egg batch with aplomb. Larger than that probably needs to be done in separate batches so as not to strain the processor's motor.
This pasta can be made into any shape and can be used for filled pastas like ravioli.
Fresh pasta cooks in about 2 minutes, depending on its thickness. Do not overcook. Sauce it as you would any other pasta.
If this is your first time making pasta, consider making plain pasta. Flavored pasta doughs tend to be a bit harder to work with than plain. Any flavoring that contains water (e.g. vegetables) will probably require that you add more flour. Sharp seeds like caraway will want to tear the pasta.
Before adding the eggs and oil, process fresh spinach with the flour. Then continue as before, adding water or flour until the dough forms a ball. Since spinach is predominantly water, you will need less water than for plain pasta. To use frozen chopped spinach, drain and wring out in a towel as much water as you can.
Pit about 20 medium oil-cured, calamata, or other olives and add to the flour and egg in the food processor. Omit salt for all types of olives. Omit olive oil for oil-cured olives. Compensate for the saltiness of this pasta in the final dish, e.g. don't use this pasta with a salty ham. This pasta is good mixed with other pastas for multi-colored pasta dishes.
Add flavoring during the process of making the dough and adjust water and flour amounts as necessary. Possibilities include any green leafy herb (parsley, basil, etc.), spices (e.g. pepper), a vegetable paste (tomato, olive, etc.), vegetable juice (instead of water, e.g. beet juice for pink pasta), and so on.
Pasta can be made with almost any flour. Finely ground durum flour is used in Italy and makes delicious pasta. American "semolina flour" is often more coursely grained but can add flavor and texture to a pasta made with it mixed with other flour.
Whole wheat pasta can be made with either 100% whole wheat or a mixture of whole wheat and white flour. It will take proportionately more water than white flour pasta.
Rye noodles can be made using rye flour but note that, as rye does not make gluten, these noodles will be more fragile and the dough will feel gummy. These are probably best rolled by hand rather than in a pasta roller.