Fresh Pasta Sheets
Here is the recipe I use for fresh pasta sheets. You can cut
these into whatever shapes you want, or, you can use full sheets to
Do yourself a favor and use a food processor. It is a bear to do this by hand, because the dough is so stiff.
- 3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour plus additional for dusting
- 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 to 3 tablespoons water
- Special equipment: a pasta machine
To make dough in a processor:
Blend flour, eggs, salt, and 2 tablespoons water in a food processor
until mixture just begins to form a ball, adding more water, drop by
drop, if dough is too dry (dough should be firm and not sticky).
Process dough for 15 seconds more to knead it. Transfer to a floured
surface and let stand, covered with an inverted bowl, 1 hour to let the
gluten relax and make rolling easier.
To make dough by hand:
Mound flour on a work surface, preferably wooden, and make a well in
center. Add eggs, salt, and 2 tablespoons water to well. With a fork,
gently beat eggs and water until combined. Gradually stir in enough
flour to form a paste, pulling in flour closest to egg mixture and
being careful not to make an opening in outer wall of well. Knead
remaining flour into mixture with your hands to form a dough, adding
more water drop by drop if dough is too dry (dough should be firm and
not sticky). Knead dough until smooth and elastic, 8 to 10 minutes.
Cover with an inverted bowl and let stand 1 hour to let the gluten
relax and make rolling easier.
Divide dough into 8 pieces, then flatten each piece into a rough
rectangle and cover rectangles with an inverted large bowl. Set rollers
of pasta machine on widest setting.
Lightly dust 1 rectangle with flour and feed through rollers. (Keep
remaining rectangles under bowl.) Fold rectangle in half and feed it,
folded end first, through rollers 7 or 8 more times, folding it in half
each time and feeding folded end through. Dust with flour if necessary
to prevent sticking. Turn dial to next (narrower) setting and feed
dough through rollers without folding. Continue to feed dough through
rollers once at each setting, without folding, until you reach
narrowest setting. Dough will be a smooth sheet (about 36 inches long
and 4 inches wide). Cut sheet crosswise in half. Lay sheets of dough on
lightly floured baking sheets to dry until leathery but still pliable,
about 15 minutes. (Alternatively, lightly dust pasta sheets with flour
and hang over the backs of straight-backed chairs to dry.) Roll out
remaining pieces of dough in same manner.