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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    325

    For Serious Cooks - Pasta Makers?

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    Does/has anyone made fresh pasta? I am thinking of getting a machine but wondering if I'll use it much. I have been baking up a storm since I got a Cuisinart mixer (like Kitchen Aid).

    Is it worth the extra effort? I'd probably go with one of the Atlas ones as they seem to have a good reputation. I've heard mixed reviews of manual vs. electric models. Thanks for your opinions.

    Q
    Yes, SHE can.

    "Angels fly because they take themselves lightly"
    Gilbert K. Chesterton

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    8,548
    Nothing disappears faster than homemade pasta. To think that my grandmothers regularly made pasta...

    It's a lot of fun. It's better / easier to use a pasta machine if there is more than 1 person working on it. If you're alone, a rolling pin might be best (but slower)
    It's a fun kind of party IMHO, get to gether with a few dear friends and make pasta.
    Mimi Team TE BIANCHISTA
    for six tanks of gas you could have bought a bike.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Troutdale, OR
    Posts
    2,600
    does your cuisinart have pasta maker attachement like the kitchenaid?

    If it does, it might be easier than getting another whole machine. I have meat grinder attachement and pasta maker attachement. And I love both of them.

    fresh egg pasta is easy. with electric rollers, it will take bit of experience before you get the hang of it. its not too bad to learn.

    make sure you weight the semolina flour (or regular flour) carefully.
    after you knead the dough. You HAVE to let it rest in the fridge for 30minutes. Then start rolling in the machine. If you don't wait, the dough will not be elastic and will be really tough to work.

    smilingcat

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Western Canada-prairies, mountain & ocean
    Posts
    6,984
    Wow, but then can't be more labour-intensive than making focaccia from scratch...which I do...but only about 10 times annually.

    I've heard a gentle way of easing oneself into homemade pasta..is to buy lasagna sheets and cutting up into strips...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    325
    Mimi - That sounds like a great idea. Maybe I'll throw a TE pasta party once I get the hang of things.

    Smilingcat - I do have a pasta attachment option for the Cuisinart but it isn't nearly as nice as the Kitchen Aid one. I do need a scale and will remember to get the Seminola flour. Thanks for the tips.

    Shootingstar - Is focassia very different from making regular bread? I'm still trying to get better at bread. I heard that the chlorine in tap water might be a factor. It still rises but would I like a little more ooopf. I never thought of playing with lasagne noodles. I saw a food show where the cook didn't precook the lasagne noodles. I didn't know that was an option.

    Thanks all!
    Yes, SHE can.

    "Angels fly because they take themselves lightly"
    Gilbert K. Chesterton

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    8,548
    Btw,
    my grandmother never weighed or measured anything. Depending on the humidity you're going to need more or less moisture for your dough. So remember weighing it gets you close, but... not necessarily THERE.

    I'd enjoy a pasta making party; I have a machine!
    Mimi Team TE BIANCHISTA
    for six tanks of gas you could have bought a bike.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Western Canada-prairies, mountain & ocean
    Posts
    6,984
    Quote Originally Posted by shootingstar View Post
    Wow, but then can't be more labour-intensive than making focaccia from scratch...which I do...but only about 10 times annually.

    I've heard a gentle way of easing oneself into homemade pasta..is to buy lasagna sheets and cutting up into strips...
    Actually today just after this posting, I saw an older tv Jamie Oliver cooking show, where he shows precisely this, use of lasagna sheets for "short-cut" pasta..and you boil the cut pasta.


    I suspect my focaccia is closer to a pizza dough, since I really want to stretch it for as many servings/slices as possible, so I flatten it out pretty thin. But it can bubble up nicely in oven..if it wasn't weighed down with yummy toppings ..(smoked salmon, etc.).

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Branford, CT
    Posts
    737
    I have both the pasta attachment for my Kitchenaid mixer and the old hand-crank style roller. The mixer attachment is by far faster, but both taste equally yummy. There's nothing better! I almost made ravioli this weekend, but never got around to it.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    A long thin country
    Posts
    390
    I don't use my machine much anymore because I can't get proper pasta flour here--but I love it when I do use it. The kids have fun with it, too. I knead my dough right in the machine (a manual Atlas)--just keep folding the dough and rolling it on the widest setting about ten times or so until you get the right texture. (I also make bread, incidentally, so it isn't the hand kneading I'm avoiding. The pasta dough is much denser and stiffer than bread dough, so I find the machine the easiest option.) I do not let it rest before rolling it out: once it has the right texture, I start tightening the machine rollers.
    ~Jen
    2008 Trek Madone 5.1/compact double/Terry Butterfly
    My family's food and winemaking blog is www.flahertywines.com

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Good things gro-oh-ow in Ontario!
    Posts
    382
    I have a hand-crank machine. I kind of wish I had the Kitchenaid attachment to make the process faster, but I still really enjoy making homemade pasta. It makes me feel rustic. . .or something.

    I'd say it's definitely worth making homemade pasta. The flavor is completely different. Whenever I make it for my family they got nuts over it and wonder why anyone would eat boxed, dried pasta. If I had the time I'd make fresh whenever I ate pasta. Or make a huge batch and dry it at home. It's not hard, it's just a bit messy and time consuming.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    325
    You have convinced me. I ordered an manual Atlas and dryer rack yesterday. Hopefully it is the one that can have a motor attached (if need be in the future).

    Thanks to the advent of Youtube and cooking shows, I've seen the process and am convinced it is worth the time and effort.

    Thanks again!
    Yes, SHE can.

    "Angels fly because they take themselves lightly"
    Gilbert K. Chesterton

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    around Seattle, WA
    Posts
    3,238
    When's the TE dinner party?
    Beth

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    8,548
    and WHERE?
    Mimi Team TE BIANCHISTA
    for six tanks of gas you could have bought a bike.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    325
    Beth, as soon as you can get here.
    Yes, SHE can.

    "Angels fly because they take themselves lightly"
    Gilbert K. Chesterton

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    steuben county new york
    Posts
    626
    You couldn't have posted this question at a better time, as that is what I have been pondering. I just purchased my first mixer, a kitchenaid, and I saw that they had a pasta attachment, among other attachments that I think I might need but never use. I debated, could I justify that extra money, and would I ever use it. So this thread has me rethinking that maybe I should bite the bullet and add it right on that ol' credit card also. Is there a universal pasta recipe or is it a family tradition type recipe that you folks use? (I remember my grandma making homemade noodles for soup when I was just a tadpole.) So if you folks could answer the pasta recipe question for me, I would greatly consider the pasta attachment. ( Kitchen aid is offering free S&H since I just bought the mixer on any attachment-what an incentive-and no I am not affiliated with Kitchen aid). So once the pasta is made, do you need a dryer rack to dry out the pasta before cooking/boiling it? Or do you use the drying rack if you plan to store it? This is all new to me so any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

 

 

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