pasta from scratch

Last night I made pasta for dinner, completely from scratch, using the directions in Marcella Cucina. The noodles came out a little strange, which was probably due to two things: I rolled out and cut the noodles without the aid of a pasta machine, which Marcella says most people need a fair amount of practice at before things will come out right, and I think the all-purpose flour I used was higher protein than the all-purpose flour she used, requiring a higher flour to egg ratio to make the dough dry enough to work with (Cookwise has a good explanation of how protein levels and liquid absorption in flour interact). The first problem just means I need more practice, and I think I can resolve the second one by mixing cake or pastry flour in with the all-purpose.

So the pasta itself was kind of weird and gummy, though still completely edible, but the celery and tomato sauce I used (from the same cookbook) was so tasty that the funky pasta didn’t ruin a thing. The sauce uses very few ingredients, but they interact to create a full, rich flavor. If this is how most of the recipes in the collection work out, I can’t wait to try the next one.

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