Making homemade pasta can seem daunting and time consuming (and messy!) at first, but it couldn’t be simpler – you’re literally just mixing flour, eggs, salt, and water. The right equipment will do all the work for you and it’s super cathartic to crack open a bottle of wine and roll out pasta sheets. I’m not an expert by any means, but I’ve compiled some of my favorite tips and tricks to make it easier (along with my go-to basic pasta recipe). Crack open a bottle of wine and get rollin’.
If you have a stand mixer, splurging for the pasta maker attachment(s) are well worth it, IMO. I have the 3-piece pasta roller and cutter set, along with the pasta extruder. I love both of them and while they’re a bit pricey upfront, it’s an awesome feeling to make gourmet spicy vodka fusilli at home for $10 worth of ingredients instead of spending $25 per plate at a restaurant. They’re an investment but you’ll have them for a long time.
Basic Pasta Recipe:
Some recipes call for olive oil; some don’t. It’s a personal preference but I find that olive oil makes the dough more gummy and difficult to roll out and more likely to get stuck in the pasta roller. I prefer to use a higher ratio of egg yolks to give it richness.
2 cups sifted AP flour
2 large eggs + 2 egg yolks
1 tsp fine sea salt
1-2 tsp water as needed
Add flour and salt to the mixing bowl of your stand mixer. Using the paddle attachment, slowly add the eggs on low speed until everything is incorporated – the dough will still be really crumbly at this point. Turn the machine off and swap out to the dough hook. Turn back to low speed (typically setting 2 or 3), allow the dough to knead for a few mins and slowly add water as needed to get the dough to come together. You don’t want the dough to be wet or sticky – it should form a rough, craggy ball.
Remove from the stand mixer and knead into a smooth ball on a countertop that’s been lightly dusted with flour. Brush the mixing bowl used to make the pasta with olive oil (or cooking spray); return the dough to the bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rest for 20-30 mins.