Herb Laminated Pasta

October 31, 2018 by Nicole Collins

TODAY IS THE DAY!!!!!!!!!!!

It’s here. It’s finally here! The Yummy Muffin goes international TODAY!

And today, we’re making something that will make us all feel like we’re strolling through the streets of Italy.

2 weekends ago, I had the opportunity to take a private pasta making class with an incredible woman named Laurie that I met through Instagram, of all places. She makes the most AMAZINGLY BEAUTIFUL homemade pastas. And she’s about to start teaching classes at one of the local spots where I love to take cooking classes. So, we connected, and the next thing you know, I’m in her kitchen learning some of her tips and tricks for making gorgeous pasta myself at home!

We started by making a basic pasta dough. That was a gazillion times easier then I could have ever imagined. 2 ingredients and a few pulses through the food processor later, we had pasta dough! It was incredible!

The next thing we worked on was making Herb Laminated Pasta Dough. That’s actually the recipe I’m going to share with you today!

After that, she had some colored doughs that she made in advance as a little surprise for me, but she gave me a lesson on how to color doughs using veggies and lots of other totally natural ingredients.

In the midst of learning about the doughs, she also showed me that using a pasta roller is not nearly as scary as it looks. This is the one she recommended me to get and the one we used during class. Then, we went over some different techniques for making hand shaped pastas. And, I think that was honestly my favorite part. I’m kind of obsessed with rolling garganelli. We made this beautiful pasta using a silicone sushi mat and a dowel rod. It was so easy!

Here is a pic from my class. You can see more on my Instagram page -->

So, let’s talk about the method for Herb Laminated Pasta. We start with a basic dough made from 00 flour and eggs. I’d never heard of 00 flour before I stepped in to her kitchen, but she prefers using this kind of flour over all purpose flour, because it’s a little finer and it has a higher gluten content. It’s better for pasta making according to Laurie!

After we make the dough, we’ve got to roll it through the pasta roller, and let it rest for a few mins. I’ve got detailed instructions below on how to run it through the pasta roller.

The next step is placing the herbs on the dough. The cool thing about this is that you can use whatever herbs you want! In her class, we used mint and parsley. Basil, sage, or tarragon would be a nice option here too. A leafy herb is essentially what you want. We place the leaves close together on one half of the dough, fold over the other half, then re-roll the dough. It’s incredible how the herbs stretch as the dough stretches. And, it’s pretty dang beautiful too.

After we let the dough rest after its second roll through the pasta roller, then we get to decide how we want to cut it. We used it in class to make some fettuccine, some garganelli, and some farfalle. I’ve got directions for all 3 below. You can make different textures too, or you can stick with one cut. It’s your choice!

When it’s time to cook the pasta, fresh pasta cooks WAY faster than boxed dried pasta. 2ish mins in salted water, and you’re ready to eat. When Laurie served this pasta to me, she and I both dressed our pasta with some olive oil, some grated cheese, some fresh cracked black pepper, and a tomato/garlic/basil salad. I like the simple toppings so that we can taste the flavor of the herbs in the pasta. But, you can use any kind of sauce you want! A hearty tomato sauce, a mushroom cream sauce, a browned butter sauce…the possibilities are endless when it comes to pasta.

Since this is a fresh dough, it’s best eaten right away. However, the pasta can be frozen too! Just flash freeze it so the pasta shapes don’t stick together, toss them in a freezer safe bag, and take them straight from freezer to water when you’re ready to eat! And, you only have to add about another minute of cooking time. Is that cool, or what?

If you’re ever in the Baltimore area and want something super fun to do, I totally recommend booking a private class with Laurie. On top of being super knowledgeable and so very talented, she’s so kind and so fun to chat with!

One of the things we have on the agenda in Florence is taking a cooking class, so I’m sure I’ll be the star of the class thanks to Laurie’s pasta guidance!

Ok guys, I’m taking the week off from posting to enjoy my vacation to the fullest. But, be sure to follow along on Instagram to see all of the amazing things I’m sure to be eating! I can only imagine the recipe inspiration I’m going to have when I get home, so get ready!

Enjoy this little piece of Italy I’m sharing with you today. And, let’s eat!

Herb Laminated Pasta

Serves: 4-6 Print

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups 00 flour, plus more for dusting

  • 3 large eggs

  • leafy herbs such as mint, basil, parsley, sage, or tarragon; cleaned and stem trimmed

Directions:

  1. In a food processor, pulse flour and eggs until you have a couscous like consistency (less than a minute). If the dough seems dry, add a little water. If the dough seems too sticky, add a little flour.

  2. Remove dough from the food processor. Sprinkle flour on cutting board. Knead dough by pressing the heel of your hand into the ball of the dough, pushing forward and down, rotating the ball 45 degrees, and repeating until the ball is no longer sticky and has a smooth, elastic texture. Shape the dough into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap, and let sit at room temp for about 30-45 mins.

  3. Cut 1/3 of the dough ball to sheet, keeping the unused dough covered by a kitchen towel. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough to a flat portion. Using the widest setting (number 1 on our machine) on the pasta machine, roll the dough through the machine. Fold the dough in to thirds towards the center, and roll the dough through the widest setting 2 more times, putting the dough in to the machine facing the opposite direction of the fold. Fold the dough in to thirds towards the center again, and repeat the process of rolling the dough through the widest setting 2 more times, putting the dough in to the machine facing the opposite direction of the fold. After passing through the widest setting 5 times, roll the dough through the next thinnest settings, once per setting, until you reach the second to last setting (number 5 on our machine). Be sure not to skip and settings. Let your sheeted dough rest, covered with a kitchen towel, for about 10 mins.

  4. Lay your sheeted dough on the cutting board, lightly spritz half of the dough with water. Arrange herbs on half of the dough, keeping the leaves close together. The herbs will stretch when we roll them again! Fold the other half of the dough over the herbs, and give it a light press with the rolling pin to seal the dough.

  5. Return to the pasta machine, rolling the dough through each setting, 1-5, again; making sure to put the dough through the machine in the same direction each time. Repeat steps 3-5 with the remaining dough. Keep any dough you're not using at the time covered with a kitchen towel to prevent drying out. This will also give the sheets time to rest before forming in to shapes. Use the first sheet of dough you rolled first, and so on.

  6. For fettuccine, if the dough feels tacky, rub flour on both sides of the pasta sheet. Roll the sheet of dough through the fettuccine setting on the pasta machine. Hang the individual strands on a drying rack to prevent pasta sticking together. Allow to dry for about 30 mins (pasta will have a leathery feel) before taking a few strands and forming into small nests of individual portions.

  7. For garganelli, if the dough feels tacky, rub flour on both sides of the pasta sheet. Cut the dough in to 2 inch squares. Place the square on a silicone sushi mat or a gnocci board as if it were a diamond facing you. Use a ¼ inch or ½ inch dowel rod, and position at the bottom corner of the diamond, folding the bottom point of the diamond over the dowel until it touches the center of the square (essentially wrapping the bottom half of the dough around the dowel). With a bit of light pressure, roll the dowel away from you which will cause the dough to form a tube and take the design of the ridges from the sushi mat. Set aside on a baking sheet to dry while forming the rest of the dough.

  8. For farfalle, cut the dough into a rectangle, roughly 2 inch by 1 inch. Place your pointer finger in the center of the rectangle while placing your thumb and middle finger on the top and bottom of the rectangle. Pinch your thumb and middle finger together, moving your pointer finger as you pinch, to create the bowtie. Press the center gently to secure the pinch. Set aside on a baking sheet to dry while forming the rest of the dough.

  9. You can cook the pasta as soon as you finish forming it. To cook the pasta, bring a pot of well salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 2-3 mins until pasta reaches your desired consistency. Serve with the sauce of toppings or sauce of your choice!

Recipe notes:

*Pasta recipe and technique by Laurie Boucher - @baltimorehomecook

*These are the tools I got to make my own pasta at home after class! I got the same pasta machine we used in class, a silicone sushi mat, a foldable pasta drying rack, and a pasta cutter with smooth and scalloped edges.

*If you're not going to use the pasta right away, you can freeze it! Place the same baking sheet that you have the pasta drying on in the freezer, to flash freeze the shapes individually. Store in a freezer safe bag in the freezer. When you're ready to eat pasta again, you can go straight from the freezer to the boiling water with the pasta. You just need to add about a minute of cooking time.

*00 flour is different than all purpose flour. It's made from soft wheat, it's finer, and it has a higher gluten content making it much better for pasta making.

*It's important to trim the stem of your herbs to the leaf so that we don't puncture our dough.

*You can make your pasta shapes even fancier by using the scalloped edge roller on the pasta cutter.

*Making pasta is all about the feel. If it feels sticky or tacky, you're not going to be able to work with the dough. Use some flour to fix that problem. If it feels dry or like it could crumble, add some water.

*Laurie makes a basic fresh tomato sauce that pairs PERFECTLY with this Herb Laminated Pasta: In a bowl, combine 10 diced plum tomatoes, 4 cloves minced garlic, 1 small minced onion, a handful of chopped basil, a drizzle of olive oil, and salt and fresh cracked black pepper, to taste. To serve with pasta, give pasta a drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkle of fresh cracked black pepper to taste, a generous scoop of tomato mix, freshly shredded parmesean cheese, and a pinch of red pepper flakes (optional, for heat). There's no exact science, as this recipe is more about loading up on the ingredients you love and building your own adventure!

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