How to make homemade pasta

Article by: Allrecipes  |  Picture by: db
How to make homemade pasta
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Magically change a heap of dough into beautiful pasta in 2 to 3 minutes! This article shows how to make fettuccine but once you have the basic technique down, you can cut the pasta to any shape you want.
First make the pasta dough. Here are a couple of recipes to try:
Home made Pasta
Home made Spinach Pasta

Dust a large, flat surface with plain flour to cut down on the dough sticking while you're working.
Flatten the dough slightly; make sure to flatten the end you plan on feeding to the pasta machine. If one side of the dough is too thick, it will not catch in the rollers of the pasta machine.
Dust the pasta machine with flour. While dusting, spin the rollers to coat them with a very thin layer of flour. Dusting will keep the dough from sticking to the machine as it is being rolled out.
Set the dough machine on the highest setting and place the thin end of the dough in between the two main rollers. Slowly pass the dough through the rollers while spinning them. Some pasta machines have automated rollers, and others have hand held cranks.
Once the pasta has successfully gone through the rollers once, the length of the pasta will have increased dramatically. The pasta will be thin and have transformed into a long sheet. At this point, the pasta can be somewhat difficult to work with. Dust the pasta evenly with flour and fold it on top of itself in a way that helps the length become more manageable.
Place the rollers closer together (generally one setting at a time), and run the pasta through the rollers again. The dough sheet will become much longer. If for any reason the pasta's length becomes unmanageable, cut off a manageable portion and set the remaining pasta aside. Finish working with the dough in hand, then return your attention to the partially rolled dough and run it completely through the rollers.
Repeat the dusting, folding and running the dough through the machine process until the dough has reached your desired thinness. Drop the setting on the machine each time you run the dough through it (this will continually thin the dough). The dough should be smooth, a little moist, and have no cracks or blemishes.
Once you have achieved the thinness you want, you can allow the dough to rest for a few minutes. At this stage, this pasta is perfect for making lasagna sheets or to cut down to make ravioli. Do not let the dough sit for too long as it can dry out very quickly and become brittle and crack.
If you are planning on making long pasta, select a length of the flat sheet and cut it off of the long strip. For example; to make fettuccine, cut a chunk about 30cm long. Attach the fettuccini cutter (it has approximately ½ cm slats) to the pasta machine and dust it with flour while spinning the rollers. Feed one end of the pasta sheet into the rollers and spin the rollers. The pasta will emerge as beautiful fettuccine.
If your pasta machine doesn't have a cutter the easiest way to cut pasta strips is to use a pizza cutter but of course a knife will do too. It doesn’t matter if the strips aren't all exactly the same width.
Dust these fettuccine strips with a light coating of flour. The cut edges might stick to each other as the newly exposed edges are slightly moister then the rest of the surface.
Without a pasta machine, you can make handmade pasta with a rolling pin. Roll the dough out into very thin sheets, then cut it into the desired shapes with a pizza cutter or knife.
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